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Darlington Memorial Library 
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t Of Nailsworth, Gloucestershire ; 



WASHINGTON, &c. &c.; 


PLANS OF TOWNS, &c. &c. &c. 





Printed by S. Gosnell, Little Queen Street, 



And may be had of all Booksellers, &c, 




I ,' \ I 

AlV'il ^ 




JtilSTORT of the Brit'ijh Settlements hi America - 

Upper arid Lower Canada - - - - 2 

Cape-Breton - - - - - la 

New-Britain - - - - - J7 

Nova-Scctia - - " * ~ 39 

St. John - . - - - - 4.4. 

Newfoundland - - - - - 45 

Greenland - - - - - - 47 

Spanijh Dominions in North- America - ' ^5 

Eaft and Weji-Florida _ _ - _ ib, 

Louijiana - - - - - - 70 

Afexico, or New- Spain - - • - 78 

View of South-America - - - - 118 

SpaniJJj Dominions in South- America - - -119 

Terra Fir ma - - - - - ib. 

Peru - _._ - -.J 27 

Chili - - - - - - 162 

Paraguay y or La Plata - - - - 168 

Obfervations on the Government j Trade, isle, of South- 
America -- - - - -172 

Portugucfe Settlement in South-America - - 204 

Brajil - _ _ ^ _ _ iZ», 

French PoJfeJJions in South- America - -213 

Cayenne _ _ _ » - ib, 

Dutch Pojfejfions in South-America - - - 2 1 6 

Surinam - - - - - - ib. 

Aboriginal America - - - - 222 

Amazonia - - - ~ - ib, 




IVeJi-Iiidia IJlands 
Britijh Weft'Indies 
Jamaica - - - 

St. CbriJIopher^s 
jintigua _ _ , 

Grenada > - - 

St. Vincent 

Ncvls - . - 


Spanijh JVcJl-Indies 
French WeJJ- Indies 
Dutch fVeft-Indles 
Danljh Wefi-Indles 
Hljlory of American Quadrupeds 
■■ — the Birds of America 
ileptUes of America 
Fljh of do. 
Infers of do. 










O F T H E 

Britini Settlements in America* 


X H£ Eiitlfli dominion in America extending dver a traft of coun- 
try called, for the purpofe of diftindion, by the general name of Britifli 
America, comprehends the vaft and unknown extent of countrv, 
hounded foUth, by the United States of America, and the Atlantic 
ocean j eaft) by the fame ocean and Davis's Straits, which divide it 
from Greenland ; extending north to the northern limits of the Hud- 
fon's Bay charter ; and weftwar'd to an uftknoun extent — lying between 
42° 30' and 7*^ north latitude ; and between 50" and 105'' weft long* 
from Greenwich j and between 2^^ e'aft and ^o'^ weft long* from Phila- 

It is divided into fouf provinces^ viz* i. Upper Canada ; — i. !Lower 
Canadaj to which is annexed New Britain^ ot the country lying round 
Hudfon's Bay, and the Ifland of Cape Breton 5 — 3. New Brunfwick ; — . 
and 4. Nova Scotia, to which is annexed the Ifland of St^ John'sj- — Be- 
fides thefe there is the Iiland of Newfoundland, which is governed b/ 
the admiral for ih^ time being, and two lieutenant governors, who re- 
fide at Placentia and Sr. Jcihn's. The troops ftaticned at Newfound- 
land, however^ are fubjed to the orders of the Govefnor-general of the 
four Britiih Provinces — Of each of thefe provinces our intention is to 
enter into a brief dcfcription. 


2 General description of 

p r o v i n g e s 

O F 



The provinces of Upper and' Lawer Canada, conftituted by ac^ of 
parliament in 1791, comprehend the territory heretofore called Ca- 
nada, or the Province of Quebec; fituated between 42'' 30^and 50'' 
liorth latit'jde, and 61° n-nd 81^ weft longitude from London ; or 14® 
eaft, and 6^ weft from Philadelphia. Their length is about fix hundred . 
miles, and their breadth five hundred and fifty, 

Thefe provinces are bounded on the northyby New Britain ;■ on the 
eaft, by the Gulph of St. Lawrence, and part of the Province of Ne\^ 
Brunlwick ; on the fouth-eaft and fouth, by the Diftrift of Main, New 
Hampfliire, Vermont, New York,' and the lakes : the weftern boun- 
dary is undefined. Tke Province of Upper Canada is the fa-me as what 
is commonly called the Upper Country, It lies north of the great 
lakes, between the latitudes of 42° 30^ and 56'^, and is feparated from 
New York by the river St. Lawrence,, here called the Cataraquiy and 
the Lakes Ontivrioand Erie, 

Lower Canada lies on both fides the' river St* Law/ence, betweert 
61 '^ and 71* W. Ion. from Londom ; and 45" and 52" N. lat. and is? 
bounded fouth by New Brunfwick, Maine, New Hampfhire, Vermont, 
and New York ; and weft by Upper Canada. 

The line which divides Upper from Lower Canada commences at a 
ftone boundary, on the north bank of the kike St. Francis, at the covey 
weft of Poi/ite an Boudct, in the limit between the townfliip of Lan- 
cafter and the Sclgnearie of New Longuevil, running along the faid 
limit ill the direction of north thirty-four degrees weft, to the wcftern- 
moft angle of the faid SeigneOrie of New Longuevil ; thence along the 
north-wcftern boundary ot the Seigneurieof Vandreuil, nmning north,- 
twenty- five degrees eaft, until it ftrikes the Ottiwas river; to afcend 
the faid river into the lake Tomifcanning ; and froni the head of the 
faid lake by a line drawn due north, until it ftrikos the boundarv line 
of Hudfon''; Bay, or New Britain. I'ppcr Canada, to include all the 
territory to the wcftuard and ioutliward of the faid line, to the utmoft 
extent oi tlie country known by t];c name of Canada, 




The clirr.ate is not very differor.t from that of the New England 
States; but as it ir. furthcx from the fea, and more to the northward 
•chan moil of then\, tlic winters are more fcvere. Winter continues 
v.'ith fuch feverity from December to April, as that the largeft rivers 
arc frozen over, and xht fnovv lies commonly fiom four to fix feet 
deep during the whole of that time. But the air is fo ferene and clear, 
and the inhabitants fo well defended agajnft the cold, that this feafon is 
.neither unhealthy nor unpleafant. The fprings open fuddenly, and 
vegetation .is fcrprifmgly rapid. The fummer is delightful, except tha^ 
a part of it is extremely hot. 


Canada was undoubtedly difcovered by Seballian Cabot, the fa- 
jnoas Italian adventurer, who failed under a commiffion from Henry 
VII. But though the Englifh monarch did not think proper to make 
any ufe of this difcovery, the French quickly attempted it; we have 
an account of their fifhing for cod on the banks of Newfoundland, and 
along the fea ccaft of Canada, in the beginning of the fixteenth cen- 
tury. About the year 1506, one Denys, a Frenchman, drew a mat) of 
the gulph of St. Lawrence; and two years after, one Aubort, a fhip- 
ciafter of Dieppe, carried over to France fome of the natives of Canada, 
As the new country, however, did not proraife the fame amazing 
quantities of gold and filver produced by Mexico and Peru, the French 
for fome years negledied the difcovery. At laft, in the year 1925, 
Francis L a fenfible and enterprifing prince, fent four fhips, under the 
f-^mmand of Verazani, a Florentine, to profccute difcoveries in that 
counrry. The particulars of this man's firft expedition are not known. 
Ab we can learn is, that he returned to France, and next year he under- 
took a fecond. As he approached the coaft, he met with a violent 
ftorm ; however, he came fo near as to perceive the natives on the 
fhore, making friendly figns to him to land. Thi? being found im- 
■prafticable, by reafon of the fuif upon the coaft, one of the failors 
threw himfelf into the fea ; but, endeavouring to fwim back to the 
■jhip, a furge threw him on fhore without figns of life. He was, how- 
ever, treated by the natives with fuch care and humanity, that he re- 
covered his flrength, and was allowed to fwim back to the (hip, which 
immediately returned to France. This is all we know of Verazani'* 
fecond expedition. He undertook a third, but was ao moic heard of, 
and it was thought that he and all his company perished before he 
could form any colony. 



In ij:34, one Jaques Carrier, of St. Maloes, fet fail under a com- 
miffion from the French king, and on the loth of May arrived at Cape 
Bonavifta in Newfoundland. He had with him two fmail fnips befides 
the one in which he failed. He cruifed along the toafts of that iiland, 
on which he difcorered inhabitants, prol)abl\- the Efkimaux. He 
landed in feveral places along the coa(l of tlie Gulf, and took pofleffion 
of the country in the king's name, On his retu rn, he was again fent 
out with a commiiTion, and a pretty large force ; he returned in 1535, 
and paffed the winter at St. Croix; but the feafon proved f© fevere, 
that he and his companions muft have died of the knrvy, had the\- not, 
by the ?3vice of the natives, made ufe of the decodion of the tops 
^nd bark of the white pines, As Carrier, however, could produce nei- 
ther gold nor filver, all that he could fay about the utility of the fet- 
tlement was difregarded : and in 1540, he was obliged to become pi- 
Jot to oi^e M. Roberval, who was by the French king appointed viceroy 
of Canada, and who failed from France with five veffels. Arriving at 
the Gulf of St. Lawrence, they built a fort ; and C^rtier was left to 
command the garrifon in it, while Roberval returned to France for ad- 
ditional recruits to his new fettlement. At laft, having embarked in 
1549, with a great number of adyentufers, neither he nor any of his 
fpllowers were heard of rrjore, 

This fatal accident fo greatly difcouraged the court of France, that 
for fifty years no meafures were taken for fupplying with neeellaries 
the fettlers that were left. At lail Henry IV. appointed the Marquii 
de la Roche lieutenant-general o'f^Canada and the neighbouring coun- 
tries. In 1598 he landed on the ifle of Sable, which he abfurdly 
thought to be a proper place for a fettlement, though it was without 
any port, and without produffl except briars. Here he left about 
forty malefaftors, the refufe of the French jails, After cruizing for 
fome time on the coaft of Nova Scotia, without being ^ble to relieve 
thefe poor wretches, he returned to France, where he died of a broken 
heart. His colony muft have perifhed, had not a French fhip been 
wrecked on the ifland, and a ftw Iheep driven upon it at the fame time. 
With the boards of the Ihip they erected huts ; and while the flieep 
lafted they lived on them, feeding afterv.-ards on fifh. X^eir clothes 
■wearing out, they made coats of feal-lkins; and in this miferable con- 
dition they fpent feven years, when Henry ordered them to be 
brought to France. The king had the curiofity to fee them in their 
feal-lkin drefles, and was fo moved, with their appearance, that he for- 
gave them all their offences, and g;^ve each of thcra fifty crowns to be-? 
gin the world anew, 

T la 


In r6oo, one Chauvin, a commander in the French navy, attended 
bv a merchant of St. Male, called Po/itgra'vey made a voyage to Ca- 
nada, from whence he returned with a very pi vrable quantity of furs. 
Next year he repeated the voyage with the fame good fortune, but 
died while he was preparing for a third. The many fpecimcns of 
profit to be made by the Canadian trade, at lall induced the public t» 
think favourably of it. An armament was equipped, and the com- 
mand of it given to Pontgrave, with powers to extend his difcoveries 
up the river St. Lawrence. Hs failed in 1603, having in his company 
Samuel Champlain, who had been a captain in the navy, and was a man 
of parts and fpirit. It was not, however, till the year i6o8> that the 
colony was fully eftablifhed. This was accomplifhed by founding the 
city of Quebec, which from that time commenced the capital of all 
the fettlements in Canada. The colonv, however, for many years con- 
tinued in a low way, and was often in danger of being totally exter- 
minated by the Indians. As the particulars of thefe wars, however, 
could neither be entertaining, nor indeed intelligible, to many of our 
readers, we choofe to omit them, and in general obferve, that the 
French not only concluded a permanent peace with the Indians, but 
fo much ingratiated themfelves with them, that they could, with the 
greateft eafe, prevail upon them at any time to murder and fcalp the 
Englilh in their fettlements. Thefe praftices had a confiderable (hare 
in bringing about a war with France, when the whole country was con- 
quered by the Britiili in 1761 ; and at the treaty of Paris, in 1763, 
was ceded, by France, to the crown of England, to whom it has ever 
fmce belonged,* 


Though the climate is cold, and the winters long and tedious, the 
foil in general is very good, and in many parts extremely fertile ; 
producing many different forts of grains, fruits, and vegetables. The 
meadow grounds, which are well watered, yield excellent grafs, and 
breed vaft numbers of great and fmall cattle. The uncultivated parts 
are a continued wood, compofed of prodigious large and lofty treesa 
of which there is fuch a variety of fpecies, that even of thofe who have 
taken moft pains to know them, there is not perhaps one that can tell 
half the number. Canada produces, among others, two forts of pines* 
the white, and the red j four forts of firs j two forts of cedar and oakj 

* For a more particular hiflory of this country the reader is rcferrfd to Charlevoix's 
hiiloi y of it ; to the Encyclopedia Britannica ; articles, Canada, Quebec, and Amc^. 
rica, No. ig^, aoo, and 207. 



the white and the red ; the male and female maple ; three forts of afli 
trees, the free, the mungrel, and the baftard; three forts of walnut- 
trees, the hard, the foft, and the fmooth; vaft numbers of beech trees 
and white wood; white and red elms, and poplars. The Indians 
hollow the red eims into canoes, feme of which made out ol one 
piece will contain twenty pcrfons; others are made of the bark; the 
different pieces of which they few together with the inner rind, and 
daub over the feams with pitch, or rather a bituminous matter refem- 
bling pitch, to prevent their leaking ; the ribs of thefe canoes arc 
ynade of boughs of trees. In the hollow elms, the bears and wild cats 
take up their lodging from Ngvember to April. The country pro- 
duces alfo a vaft variety of other vegetables, particularly tobaccoj 
vhich thrives well. Near Quebec is a fine lead mint-, and many ex- 
cellent ones of iron have been difcovered. It hath alfo been reported 
that filver is found in fome of the mounta'r.s. 

The rivers are extremely numerous, and many of them very large 
and deep. The principal are, the Ouattauais, St. John's, Seguinay, 
Defpaires, and Trois Rivieres ; but all thefe are fwallowed up by the 
great river St. Lawrence. This river ilTiies from the lake Ontario 5 
and, taking its courfe north eaft, wafhes Montreal, where it receives 
the Ouattauais, and forms many fertile iflands. Jt continues the 
fame courfe, and meets the tide upwards of four hundred miles from 
the fea, where it is navigable for large veflels ; and below Quebec, 
three hundred and twenty miles from the fea, it becomes {0 broad and fo 
deep, that fnips of the line contributed in the lafl: war to reduce that ciry. 
After receiving in its progrcfs innumerable ftre:)ms, it at laft falls into 
the ocean at Cape Rofiers, where it is ninety miles broad, and where 
the cold is intenfe, and the fea boifcerous. This river is the only one 
upon which any fettlements of note are as ytz formed. 

A river has been lately furveyed, by the deputy Surveyor General 
©f Canada, from its entrance into the Bay of Kenty, near Cardaraqui^ 
to its fource of Lake St. Clie ; from which there is an eafy and Ihort 
portage acrofs N. W. to the N. E. angle of Lake Huron ; and another 
that is neither long nor difficult, to the fouthward, to the old fettle- 
rnent of Toronto. This is a fhort rout from Fort Frontinac to Ivlichi|? 



Quebec is the capital, not only of Lower Canada, but of all Britifh 
America ; it is iituated at the confluence oi ths rivers St, Lawrence and 


15t. Charles, or the Little River, about three hundred and twenty inilfs> 
from the fea. It is built on a rock, partly of marble, and partly of 
flate. The tt)\rn is divided into an upper and lower. The houfes la 
both are of Hone, and built in a toknable manner* The fortifications 
hre ftrong) though not re;^ular. The town is covered with a regular 
and beautiful cit.uial, in which the governor refidcs. The number of 
inhabitants is computed at about fifteen thoufand. The river, which 
irom the fea hither is four or tivc leagues broad> narrows all of a fud- 
den to about a mile wide. The haven, which lies oppofite the town^ 
is fafe and commodiousj and about five fathoms deep. The harbour 
is flanked bv two baftionsj that are raifed twenty-five feet from the 
ground, which is about the height of the tides at the time of the equi- 

From Qnebec to Montreal, which is about one hundred and feventy 
miles, in failing up the river St. Lav/rence, the eye is entertained with 
beautiful landfcapes, the banks being- in many places very bold and 
fteep, and (haded with lofty trees. The farms lie pretty clofe all the 
Way, feveral gentlemens' houfes, neatly built, fhew themfelvcs at in- 
tervals, and there is all the appearance of a flourifhing colony ; but 
there are few town? or villages. It is pretty much like the well 
fettled parts of Virginia and Maryland, where the planters arc wholly 
■within thcmfelveSi Many beautiful iflands are interfperfed in the 
channel of the river, which have an agreeable effeft upon the eye. 
After paifing the Richelieu iflands, the air becomes fo mild and tem- 
perate, that the traveller thinks himfelf tranfported to another climate^ 
but this is to be underltood only of the fummcr months^ 


The tov>'n called Trois Rivieres, or the Three Rivers> js' about 
half way between Quebec and Montreal, and has its name from three 
rivers which join their currents here, and fall into the river St, 
Lawrence. It is much rfeforted to hy feveral r>xtion^ of Indians, who, 
by means of thefe rivers, come hither and trade with the inhabitants in 
various kinds of furs and fkins. The cmm^ty is nleafant, and fertile 
15 corn, fruit, .^-c. and great numbers of handfoir.e houfes Hand cm 
both fides the ri\er< 


Montreal flands en an ifland in the river Sr, Lawrence, \vkich is 
ten leagues in length, and four in breadth, at chc foot of a mountain 
which gives name to ir, Acut half i league from the fouth (liorc. ' 



While the French had pofTeffion of Canada, both the city and ifland of 
Montreal belonged to private proprietors, who had improved them (a 
well, that the whole ifland had become a moft delighfful fpot, and 
produced every thing that could adminifter to the conveniencies of 
life. The city forms an oblong fquare, divided by regular and well- 
formed ftieets J and when taken by the Englilh the houfes were built 
in a very handfome manner; and every houfe might be feen at one view 
from the harbour, of- from the fouthernmoft fide of the river, as the 
hill on the fide of which the town ftands falls gradually to the water. 
This place is furrounded by a wall and a dry ditch; and its fortifica- 
tions have been much improved by the Englilh. Montreal is nearly as 
laro-e as Quebec, but fince it fell into the hands of the Englilh it has 
fuffered much by fires. 

The principal towns in Upper Canada are Kingdon, on Lake On- 
tario, Niagara, between Lake Ontario and Lake Erie, and Detroit, 
fituated on the weftern bank of Detroit river, between Lake Erie and 
Lake Huron, and nine miles below Lake St, Clair.* 


Upper Canada, though an infant fettlement, is faid by Tome to con- 
tain forty thoufandjby others, only twenty thoufand inhabitants. The 
truth probably is between them. Lower Canada, in 17 84, contained 
one hundred thirteen thoufand and twelve fouls. Both provinces may 
now contain about one hvmdrcd and fifty-two thoufand fouls, which 
Humber is muhiplying, both by natural increafe-iind by CxTiigrations. 


About nine tenths of the inhabitants of thefe province? are Romaa 
Catholics, who enjoy under the prefent government tlic fame pro- 
vifion, rights, and privileges, as were granted them in 17745 by the ad 
of 14th of George III. The. reil of the people are Epifcopalians, Prcf- 
byterians, and a few of almoft all the different feds of Chriftians. 


The commodities required by the Canadians from Europe arc, wine, 

or rather rum; cloths, chiefly coarfe ; linen; and wrought iron. The 

Indian trade requires rum, tobacco, a foit of dufiil blankets, guns, 

powder, balls, and flints, kettles, hatchets, toys, and trinkets of all 

* Xia-^nra and Detroit, though at prefent In poiFefrion of Uie CritiOi government, 
(fl>:::ji-v !-uh- l:.jfy r: fcztf, -arc, without any pulliblc doubt, boih withm the liiniis 
of ill'- ruitra S:;i;cs. 



kinds. While the country was in pofTeffion oi the French, the Indians 
fupplied them with poultry ; and the French had traders, who, like 
the original inhabitants, traverfed the vi'.lt lakes and rivers in cancjes, 
with incredible induflry and patience, carrying their goods into the 
remoteft parts of America, and among nations entirely unknown to 
us. Thefe again brought the furs, &c. home to them, as the Indians 
were thereby habituated to trade with them. For this purpofe, people 
from all parts, even from the diftanccofone thcufand miles, came to tlie 
French fair at Montreal, which began in June, and rom:-tinic3 laftcd 
three months. On this occaubn many folemnities v/cre obferved^ 
guards were placed, and the governor afllfled to prefervc order in Co 
great and various a concourfe of favage nations. But fometirnes great 
diforders and tumults happened : and the Indians frequently gave for a 
dram all that they were poflefled of. It is remarkable, that many of 
thefe nations aftually paffed by the then Engli(h fettlement of Albany 
in New York, and travelled tv/o hundred miles further to Montreal, 
though they could have purchafed the goods they wanted cheaper at 
the former. 

Since Britain became pofiefled of Canada, her trade with that coun- 
try has generally employed from thirty to forty fhips, and about four 
thoufand feamen. 

The amount of the exports from the province of Qnebec, as far 
back as in the year 1786, was three hundred forty-three thoufand two 
hundred and fixty-two pounds, nineteen ihiliings and fix-pence. The 
amount of imports in the fame year was three hundred tv/enty-five 
thoufand one hundred and fixteen pounds. The exports confuted of 
wheat, flour, bifcuit, flax-feed, lumber of various kinds, fifn, potafli, 
oil, ginfeng and other medicinal roots, but principally of furs 
AND PELTRIES, to the amouut of two hundred eightv-five thoufand 
nine hundred and feventy-feven pounds *. The imports confined of 


* Should America infiil: (as no doubt flie will) on Great Britain furrendcring the 
frontier forts, and thole lands and fettlements which (he has hitherto held in defiance oJ 
the moll folemn treaties, there cannot remain a doubt but nine tenths of the fur trade 
will pafs into the hands of the Americans. This will prove a moil fevcre blow to ih; 
Canadian commerce, as well as to the revenue of Great Britain, while the Americaps, 
grown wife by experience, fending their furs dircft to France, Germany, &c. inliead 
of caufir.g them to pafs through tha hands of Britifh merchants and brokers, will be 
able to divide an additional profit of from thirty to fifty per cent., between themfclves 
^nd the merchants of thofe countries. — A profit which is now exclufively enjoyed by 
Britifh fubjcfts, or foreigners icfiding in Great Britain, as intermediate a"-ent$ ; — — 

XOL IV. c 


rum, brandy, moIa!Tes> coffee, fugar, wines, tobacco, fair, chocolate^- 
provifions'for the troop., aijd dr/ goods. 


By the Quebec aft, paifed by the parliament of Great Eriraiii in the' 
year 1791, To much of the acl of the 14th of George III. palled in the 
year 17741 as relates to the appointment of a council for the govern- 
ment of the province of Quebec, is repealed; and it is enafted that 
there fliall he within each of the provinces of Upper and Lower Ca- 
nada, a Legiflative Council, and an Aflembly, who, with the confent of 
the Govevnor, appointed by the King, lliail have power to make laws. 
The governor may give or withhold his majefty's aiTent to- bills paffed 
by the legiHative council and alTembiy, or referve them for his majefty's 
pleafure. Bills refer\edare to have no force till his majefty's aflent 
is fignined by the governor, which, to be valid, muft be fignified within 
two years from the time the bill is prefented to the governor. The 
governor muil: tranfmit to the fecretary of itate copies of fuch bills as- 
have been aflented to, which his Majefty in council may declare his-- 
difallowance of within two years from the receipt. 

The Legillative Council is to confift of not fewer than feven mem- 
bers for Upper, and fifteen for Lov/er Canada, to be fummoned by the 
Governor, who muft be authorized by the King.- Such members are 
to hold their feats for life, unlcfs forfeited by lour years continual 
abfence, or by fwearing allegiance to fome foreign power. 

The Houfe of Aflembly is to confift of not lefs than fixteen m.embers 
from Upper, and not lefs than filty from Lower Canada, chofen by the 
freeholders in the feveiai towns and diftrids. The council and aflem- 
bly are to be called together at leaft once in every year ; and every 
aflTembly is to continue four years, unlefs fooner difl"olved by the Go- 
vernor.- All queftions are to be decided by a majority of votes of the 

but: ir may be faid, that the fcarcilv of fprcic in Amrric:^, and their great demand for 

Englilb manilfafturcs, will i'ccurc the lur trade to Great Britain fuch, however, 

fhould remember, that the rapid progrefs ot nianufafturts in the United States, 
aided by thcprcfcnL fnirit of emigration in Kiiropc will foon lelfcn this deinand, and 
leave Uie Am-ricans at liberty to carry their furs and otlier articles to a market which 
will rapidly increafc their fpccie fuHicicnt to cnaVile ihcm to range the European and 
other markets with that advantage v/hich the Britilh merchant has lojig experienced 
almofl; withont a rival — indeed, it is impolliblc to corifider the rapid advances which 
America has made fjucc her ir.depenvi:'nce, without at the Imne ti>Ttc being convinced, 
bat indesd of drawing her fapplirs of maniif.-.tlurod goods from Great Bri;a;n, fhc- 
■will, er'c !oi)i;, bcctyuv her rival in ti;e moft I'nipf-r.anL arii;ks in. sisuoll every other 
Euroj-van mark-;. ' 



■members prefent. His Majefty may authorize the Governor to fix the 
•time and place of holding the elections, (fubjcft, however, to fuch nro- 
■vifions as may hereafter be made by the Legiflaturc) and to fix the 
times and places of holding the feffior.s of the ailembly, and to prorogue 
;and diffolve the fame whenever he fhall judge it necelTary. 

The Governor, together with fuch of the executive council as fhall 
be appointed by the King, for the affairs of each province, are to be 
a court of civil jurifdidion for hearing and determining appeals, fub- 
jeft, however, to fuch appeals from their judgment as heretofore ex- 
ifled. All lands in Upper Canada are to be granted hereafter in free 
and common foccage ; and aifo in Lower Canada, when the grantee 
fhall defire it, fubject neverthelefs to alterations by an aft oi the Legi- 

Britilb America is fupcrintended by an officer filled Governor Ge- 
neral of the four Britifh provinces in North America, who, bejlJes 
other powers, is commander in chief of all the Britilh troops in the 
four provinces and the governments attached to them and Newfound- 
land. Each of the provinces have a lieutenant Governor, who, in the 
abfence of the Governor GeneraJ, has all the powers requifite to a 
^hief i;i3s:if^rate. 




O F 




The ifland, cr rather colkiftion of iflands, called by the French 
JLes Ifes de Madarny which lie lb contiguous as that they are commonly 
called but one, and comprehended under the name of the Ifland of 
Cape Breton, lies between lat. 45''" and 47° N. and between 59° and 
60°, W. long, from London, or 14° and \^° E. long, from Philadel- 
phia, and about 45 leagues to the eaitwardof Halifax. It is about 
one hundred miles in lengih, and fifty in breadth; and is feparated 
from Nova Scotia by a narrow ftrait, called the Gut of Cavjot which 
is the communication between the Atlantic Ocean, and the Gulph of 
St. Lawrence. 

It is (urrouiided with little fharp-poir.ted rocks, feparated from each 
other by the waves, above which fome of their tops arc' vifible. All 
its harbours are open to the eaft, turning towards the fouth. On the 
other parts of the coafl: there are but a few anchoring places for fmall 
veffirls, in creeks, or between iflets. The harbour of St. Peter's, at 
the well end of the ifland, is a very commodious place for carrying on 
the fifliery. 


Except in the hilly parts, the furface of the country has but little 
folidity, being every where covered with a light mofs and with water. 
The dampncfs of the foil is exhaled in fogs, without rendering the air 
unwholefomc. In other refpeifts, the climate is very cold, owing either 
to the prodigious quantity of lakes, which cover above half the ifland, 
and remain frozen a long time ; or to the number of fcreiLs, that totally 
intercept the rays of the fun j the efFcit of which is bcRdcs decreafcd by 
perpetual clouds. 


Though fome fifliermen had long reforted to this ifland every fum- 
Wicr, not more than twenty or thirty had ever fixed there. The French, 



^ho took poHeffion of 't in AugJil I7i3> were properly the firfi; inha- 
bitants. They c]ianged its name into that oi" IJlc Royaky and fixed upon 
Fort Dauphin for their principal fettlement. This harbour was two 
leagues in circumference. The fnips came to the very fhore, and were 
fheltered from winds. Forefts affording oak fufficient to fortify and 
build a large city, were near gt hand ; the ground appeared lefs bar- 
ren than in other parts, and the fillxcry was more plentiful. This 
harbour might haAX been rendered impregnable at a trlHing expence; 
but the difficulty of jiparoaching it (a circumftance that had at firft 
made a flronger iroprcllton than the advantages refulting from it) oc- 
cafioned it to be abandoned, alter great labour had been beflowed 
upon the undertaking. They then turned their views to Louifbourg, 
the accefs to which was eafier ; and convenience was thus preferred to 
fecurity ; the fortification of Louifbourg, however, was not begun till 

In the year 17 14, fome fifhermen, who till then had lived in Ngw- 
foun41and, fettled in this illand. It was expected that their number 
would foon have been increafed by the Acadians, who v/erc at liberty, 
from the treaties that had been granted tllem, to remo\ e with all their 
efFecls, and even to difpofe of their eflates ; but thefe hopes were dif- 
appointed. The Acadians chofe rath^er to retain their poflcflions under 
the dominion of Britain, than to give them up for any precarious advan- 
tage they might derive from their attachment to France. Their place 
was fupplied by fome diflreffed adventurers from Europe, who came 
over from time to time to Cape Breton, and the number ..f inhabitants 
gradually increafed to four thoufand. They were fettled at Louifbourg, 
Fort Dauphin, Port Touloufe, Nerucka, and on all the coafls where 
they found a proper beach for drying the cod. 

Thislfland, was attacked by the Englifli in 1745; and the event is 
of fo lingular a nature, that it deferves a particular detail. The plan 
ofthisfirft invafion was laid at Boflon, and New England bore the 
expence of it. A merchant named Pt-^/f?-;?/, who had excited, encou- 
raged, and direfted the enterprize, was intrufted with the command ok 
an army of fix thoufand men, which had been levied for this expe- 

Though thefe forces, convoyedby a fquadron from Jamaica, brought 
the firll news to Cape Breton of the danger that threatened it ; though 
the advantage of a furprife would have fecured the landing without 
oppofition ; though they had but fix hundred regular troops to encoun- 
ter, and eight hundred inhabitants hallily armed, the fuccefs of the 
undertaking was flill precarious. What great exploits, indeed, could 



be expeded from a militia fuddenly affembjed,' who had never fecn a 
•fiege or faced an enemy, and vere to aft under the dircdion of fea- 
officers only. Thefe unexperienced troops Hood in need of the affiftance 
of fome fortunate incident, which the/ were indeed favoured with in 
a fingular manner. 

Tiie conftruction and repairs of the fortifications had always been 
left to the care of the garrifon of Louilljourg. The foldiers were ea- 
ger of being employed in thefe works, which the), confide red as con- 
ducive to their fafety, and as the means of procuring them a comfort- 
able fubfiftence. When they found that thofe who vrere to have paid 
them, appropriated to themfelves the profit of their labours, they de- 
manded juftice. It was denied fhem, and they were determined to 
affcrt their right. As thefe depredations had been fhared betvveen the 
chief perfons of the colony and the fubaltern officers, the f:>Idiers could 
obtain no rcdrefs. Their indignation againft thefe rapacious extorti- 
oners rofc to fuch a height, that they dcfpifed all authority. They 
had lived in an open rebellion for fix months, when the Britifli ap- 
peared before the pkce. 

This was the time to conciliate the minds of both parties, and to 
unite in the common caufe. The foldiers made the firft advances; but 
their commanders miftruiled a generofity of which they themfelves 
were incapable. It was firmly believed that the foldiers were only de- 
firous of fallying out, that they might have an opportunity of defert- 
ine; and their own officers kept them in a manner prifoners, till a de- 
fence fo ill managed had reduced them to the necenity of capitulating. 
The whole ifland (bared the fate of Louiibourg, its only bulwark. 

This valuable pofi'effion, rcftored to France by the treaty of Aix la 
Chapelle, was again attacked by the Britidi in 1758, and taken. The 
poffeffion was confirmed to Great Britain by the peace in 1763 ; fince 
which the fortifications have been blown up, and the town of Louif- 
hour? difmantlcd. 


The inhabitants never applied themfelves to agriculture, tlie foil 
being unfit for it. They often fowed corn, but it feldom came to 
maturity ; and when it did thrive fo much as to be worth reaping, it 
had degenerated fo confiderably, that it was not fit for feed for the 
next harvert. T'ley have only continued to j-Iant a few pot-herbs that 
are tolerably well tafted, buc muft be renewed every year from abroad. 
The jwornefs and fgarcity of pafturcs has likc^vife prevented the in- 



crcafe of cattle. In a word, the foil of Cape Ereton feeins calculated 
to invite none but fiflicrmen. 

Though the illand v/as entirely covered with forefts before it was 
inhabited, its wood has fcarce ever been an objcft ot trade. A great 
quantity, however, of fott wood was fouiid there fit for firing, and 
ibn:c that miglit be ufed for timber: but the oak has always been 
fcarce, and the fir never yielded much refin. The peltry trade was a 
Very inconfiderable objeft. It confifted only in the Ikins of a few 
lynxes, elks, muilc-rats, v.'ild cats, bcarb, otters, and foxes both of a red 
and filver-grey colour. Stime of thefe were procured from a colony of 
Mickiiiac Indians who had fettled on the ifland with the French, and 
never could raife more than fixty men able to bear arms. The reft 
came from St. John's, or the neighbouring continent. Greater advanta- 
ges might poffibly have been derived from the coal-mines, which 
abound in the ifland. Tlaey lie in a horizontal direction ; and being 
no more than fix or eight feet below the furface, may be worked with- 
out dissins: deep, or draining off" the waters. Notuithilandino; the 
prodigious demand for this coal from New England, from the year 
1745 to 1749? thefe mines would probably have been forfaken, had not 
the fliips which vvcre fent out to the French iilands wanted baliaft. In 
one of thefe mines a fire has been kindled, which could never yet be 

The people of Cape Breton did not fend all their fifli to Europe, 
they fent part of it to the French fouthern iflands, on beard twenty or 
twenty-five Ihips from feventy to one liundred and forty tuns burden. 
Befides the end, which made atleaft half their cargo, they exported to 
the other colonies timber, planks, thin oak-boards, falted falmon and 
mackeril, train-oil, and fea-coal. All thefe were paid for in fugar and 
cofiee, but chiefly in rum and molaiTes. The ifland could not confume 
all thefe commodities. Canada took off but a fmall part of the over- 
plus; it was chiefly bought by the people of New England, who gave 
in exchange fruits, vegetables, wood, brick, and cattle. This trade 
of exchange was allowed ; but a fmuggling trade was added to it, car- 
ried on in flour, and fait filh. 


On this ifland there are about one thoufand inhabitaat?, who have a 
lieutenant-governor refiJent among them, appointed by the king. The 
principal towns are Sidney, the capital, aud Louifccurg, which has the 
be;1 harbour in the ifland. 



This ifland may be confidered as the key to Canada, and the very 
valuable fifhery, in its neighbourhood, di;pend3 for its protedion on 
the poffeffion of this ifiand; as no nation can C2:ry it on without fome 
convenient harbour of ftrength to fupply £ id proteft it ; and LouiC* 
bourg is the principal one for thefe purpoies. 



( 17 ) 


The country lying round Hudfon's Bay, or the country of the Efqui- 
maux, comprehended Labrador, New North and South Wales, has ob- 
tained the general name of New Britain, and is attached to the go- 
vernment of Lower Canada. A fuperintendant of trade, appointed by 
the Governor-General of the four Britifh Provinces, and refponfible 
to him, refides at Labrador. 


The climate, even about Haye's river, in only lat. ^■j'', is, during 
winter, exceffively cold. The fnovvs begin to fall in Oftober, and con- 
tinue falling by intervals the whole winter : and, when the froft is 
moft rigorous, in form of the fineft fand. The ice on the rivers is eight 
feet thick. Port wine freezes into a folid mafs ; brandy coagulates. 
The very breath falls on the blankets of the beds in the form of a hoar 
froft, and the bed-cloaths often are found frozen to the wall. The fun 
rifes, in the (horteft day, five minutes paft nine, and fets five miiiutes 
before three. In the longeil day the fun rifes at three, and fets about 
nine. The ice begins to difappear in May, and hot weather commences 
about the middle of June, which at times is fo violent as to fcorch the 
faces of the hunters.' Thunder is not freq^jent, but very violent. But 
there is a great difference of heat and cold in this vaft extent, which 
reaches from lat, 50, 40^ to lat. 6^ north. — During winter the firma- 
ment is not without its beauties. Mock funs, halos are not unfre- 
quent ; they are very bright, and richly tinged with all ihe colours of 
the rainbow. The fun rifes and fets with a large cone of yellowifh 
light. The night is enlivened u ich the Aurora Boreal's, which fpreads 
a thoufand different lights and colours over the whole concave of the 
fky, not to be defaced even by the fplendour of the full moon; and the 
ftars are of a fiery rednefs. 

In this feafon it however frequently happens, that the air is fo full of 
watery vapours, that the fun will be obfcured for feveral weeks toge- 
ther. This is occafioned by the rime, which afcends from the open 
fea water, and being condenfed by the cold, is driven by the wind to a 
confiderable diftance at times, from forty to fifty miles. 

The climate is very perceptibly milder in the interior, than in the 
parts on the fea coaft. The fnow is not half fo deep, neither are the 

Vot. IV, D hotteft 


hotteft days in fummer fo fultry. If a man is frozen in the uppfci* 
country, it is owing t® his not having taken proper care of himfelf ; 
whereas upon the fea coaftj with every neceffary precaution, a man will 
frequently have his nofe, face, or fingers-ends {kinne'd. 

The heavens, in cold winter nights, do not exhibit that luminous 
appearance, which, as before remarked, is obfer stable on the fea coaft j 
nor do the ftars fhine with that refulgent luftre. The Aurora Borealis 
is not fo common nor fo brilliant; the Parhelia and Parafelenes are lefs 
frequent; and fogs in the winter, are unknown; 

In Ihort, the fea coaft and the upper country will admit of no com- 
parifon : one is temperate and healthy, the land dry, pleafant, and fer- 
tile in fpontaneous produAions, and the animal creation various and 
excellent for the fupport of man : in it, a perfon who could live retired^ 
might pafs his days with eafe, content, and felicity, and if he did not 
enjoy an uninterrupted ftate of health, it \Vould not be the fault of the 
air he lived in. On the other hand, the lower country is one endlefs 
bogj where the favage animals themfelves are fometim&s conftantly 
fwampti The fineft furamer's day will begin with a fcorching heat* 
and terminate with a cold eafterly fea fog. The weather ufually inci- 
dent to autumn and midfummer, is experienced in their different ex- 
tremes during the fhort fpace of twelve hours. The inhabitants fre- 
t[uently fall a prey to the feverity of the froft. The whole country 
furniflies but one fpecies of quadruped fit for the fupport of man ; and 
the Europeans are accurfed with an airlifting epidemical difordei"* 
Which they very emphatically term the « The Country Diftemper." 


As far inland as the Hudfon Bay Company have fettlements, which 
Is fix hundred miles to the weft of Fort Churchill, at a place called 
'Hudfon Houfe, lat. ^^'^f ^O"* ic6' 27^ W. from London, is flat 
toUiitry: nor is it known how far to the eaftward the great chain of 
•moiintains feen by the navigators from the Pacific Ocean branches off* 
From Moofe River, or the bottom of the bay, to Cape Churchillj the 
land is flat, marfhy, and wooded with pines, birch, larch, and wil- 
lows. The pine trees, which ate of different kinds, are but fmall ; 
near the fea-coafts they generally run knotty, and are unfit to be ufed 
in the ftrufture of good buildings. The fame may be faid of the ju- 
niper trees, growing in the fame fituationk 

But on leaving the marfliy ground, and retiring inland to the fouth- 
ward, the trees are of a more ftately growth; and about Moofc and 
Albany Forts, they are found of all didmeters. Here the climate is 



much more temperate than at York Fort and Churchill Settlement, 
Potatoes, turnips, and almoll every fpecies of kitchen garden ftufF, 
are reared with facility ; and no doubt corn might be cultivated, if the 
lords of the foil, the Hudfon's Bay Company, had patriotifra enough to 
make this extenfive countrv of any fervice to Great-Britain. But it 
has been an invariable maxim with them for many years pall, to damp 
every laudable endeavour in their fervants, that might tend to make 
thefe countries generally beneficial to the Mother Country,' This con- 
duft will appear very extraordinary to thofe who are unacquainted 
with the felf-interefted views of the Company. They imagine, that if 
it was known to the nation, that the lands they poffeis were capable of 
cultivation, it might induce individuals to enquire into their right to 
an exclufive charter; it is therefore their bufinefs to reprefent it ia 
the worft light poffible, to difcour,ige an inquiry, which would fliake 
the foundation of their beloved monopoly. 

Throughout the woods to the fouthward the ground is covered with 
a very thick mofs, among which grow various kinds of fmall fhrubs, 
bearing fruit, fuch as goofeberries, currants, ftrawberries, rafberriesji 
cranberries, with many others too tedious to mention. A herb, which 
the natives call Wee fuc a pucka, grows very plentifully in all parts of 
the country. Th« Indians make ufe of it by way of medicine; it 
makes a very agreeable tea, and is much ufed here, both by Europeans 
and natives, not only for its pleafant flavour, but for its fiilutary effefts. 
Its virtues are many ; it is an aromatic, very ferviceable in rheumatic 
cafes, ftrengthens the flomach, relieves the head, and alfo promotes 
perfpiration. Outwardly, it is applifed to gangrenes, contullons, and 
excoriations ; ii) the latter cafe the powder is made ufe of. Another 
herb of much utility to the natives grows likewife here; this they 
call Jack ajh a ptick. They mix it with their tobacco to reduce its 

In the interior of the country is a great quantity of coal, which is 
conveyed down the rivers by the currents. A perfon belonging to the 
Hudfon Bay Company once brought down a piece he had taken from 
the earth, where it was piled up in heaps. It was in every refpcdl 
fimilar to that brought to London from the North of England and 
Scotland. He faid that he alked the li;dians the ufe of it ; and on 
their expreffmg their ignorance, he put feme of it in the fire, which 
burnt violently to their great aftonifhment. What other treafures may 
be concealed in this unknown repofitory, or what valuable ores may bi 
intermixed with the coal, we will not take upon us to determine. 
All thefe couptries are well ftored with moofe, beavers, otters, Sec. 
D 2 but 


but the red deer, jumping deer, and buffalo, are not to be found till 
where the country becomes more open, and fo free from woods, that 
in many places fcarce a fufficiency can be procured to make a tempo- 
rary fire for travellers, who are obliged inflead thereof to ufe buiFala 

Many fpacious lakes are to be found in the inland parts. Moft of 
tiiefe abound with fifh, efpecially when joined to a river ; but the na- 
tives feldom or never look after them, and the greater part of thofe 
Indians who come to the EngliQi fettlements to trade, will neither eat 
filh, water-fowl, nor any amphibious animal. 

How far the foil of this country may be favourable to the culture of 
vegetables we are not enabled to advance. Experiments, which Ihould 
be our principle guide to knowledge in thefe matters, never having been 
much made ufe of, though we may venture to aflert, that many parts 
would admit of cultivation. The Hudfon's Bay Company fervants 
have tried Indian corn and bailey, by way of experiment, which came 
to perfeftion ; potatoes, turnips, carrots, radilhes, onions, &c. have 
been lately reared, and fovind as good as thofe in Canada. 

The fruits which fpontaneoufly (hoot up, are not in fuch great va- 
riety in the wildernefles of Canada, as in the country we are fpeaking 
o^. The natives colleft vaft quantities of a kind of wild cherries and 
bring them in for fale. The Hudfon's Bay people make an excellent 
beverage of them, w hich is grateful to the tafte, and is an excellent 
antifcorbutic. Rafpberries, ftrawberries, currants, cranberries, and 
an infinity of other kinds are to be found every where. So that a per- 
fon, without the help of ammunition, may in the fummer feafon pro- 
cure a very comfortable fubfulence, were he bewildered, and alone. 
Sliould any one be in this fituation, almoft every pond of water would 
fiirnifh him with et;gs of ducks, Sec. and every thicket with a fatiety 
of delivious fruit. 

The eailern coaft is barren, pad the efforts of cultivation. The fur- 
face is every where uneven, and covered with mailes of ftone of an 
amazing fize. It is a country of fruitlefs and frightful mountains, 
fome of an aftonidiing height. The vallies are full of lakes, formed not 
from fprings, but rain and fnow, fo chilly as to be produdive of a 
fe* fnaall trout only. The mountains have here and there a blighted 
(hrub, or a little mofs. The vallies are full of crooked, flunted trees, 
pines, Hr-, birch, and cedars, or rather a fpecies of the juniper. In 
h ^tudc 60** on this coaft, vegetation ceafes. The whole (bore, like 
tl at on the wcfl, is foced with iflands at fomc diftance from land. 

'i'ht principal rivers which water this country, are the Wager, 


N E W B R I T A I N. 21 

Monk, Seal, Pockerekefko, Cl.urcliill, Nelfon, Hayes, New Severn, 
Albany, and Moofe rivers, all which empty into Hudfon's and J:rncs 
Bay from the weft. The mouths of all the rivers are filled with 
(hoals, except Churchill's in which the largeft fliips may lie ; but ten 
miles higher the channel is obftrufted by fund banks. All the rivers 
as far as they have been explored, are full of rapids and catarafts, 
from ten to fixty feet perpendicular. Down thefe rivers the Indian 
traders find a quick paflage; but their return is a labour of manjf 


The inhabitants among the mountains are Indians ; along the coafts> 
Efquimaux. The Hudfon's Bay Indians, in all probability, were ori- 
ginally tall, properly proportioned, ftrongly made, and of as manly an 
appearance as any people whatever. This, however, was before their 
commerce with Europeans had enervated and debafed their minds and 
bodies, by introducing fpirituous liquors among them, and habituating 
them to fevere courfes of drinking. They are naturally much addidled 
to this fatal cuftom ; but when it is encouraged and enforced by thofe 
who call themfelves an enlightened people, it certainly is not only 
blameable, but highly criminal. Were common fenfe but made ufe of 
to direct tl^e conduft of thofe who are benefited by the trade carried 
on with the Indians, felf-interefl: and good policy would teach them 
to difcourage, as much as poffible, a habit fo prejudicial to them, and 
fatally deftrudive to thefc miferable people. They are generally of 
a benevolent difpofition, and eafy to be perfuaded by perfons who un- 
derftand their language; but as a moft unconfcionable gain is got by 
trading in fpirits with them, it is not to be fuppofed the factors will 
ever be induced to put a ftop to this unchriftian praftice. An Indian 
will barter away all his furs, nay even leave himfelf without a rag 
to cover his nakednefs, in exchange for that vile unwholefome ftufF, 
called Englifli brandy. If by fuch excefllve intoxication they only ir- 
reparably injured their own conftitutions, and debilitated their race, 
the confequences, though pernicious, would not be fo dreadful as 
they ufually are; but during their intoxication not only frelh quarrels 
cnfue, old grievances are alfo renewed, and death is frequently the 
confequence of former bickerings, which but for this ftimulator had 
been buried in oblivion. 

By this diabolical commerce the country is impoverifhcd of inhabi- 
tants, the trade of courfe imperceptibly declines, and this extenfivc 
fettlement is in a great meafure prevented from rivalling many of our 
•ther foreign cftablifhmeats. 



The natives are however a people '>f a middle fize, of a copper 
complexion, their features regular and agreeable, and few diftorted or 
deformed perfons are (esn among them. When young they have ex- 
cefiive large bellies, which is to be attributed to the enormous quan- 
tity of food they devour; but as they grow towards puberty this part 
decreafes to a common fize, Their conftitutions are ftrong and heal- 
thy, and their diforders few; the chief of thefe is the dyfentery, and 
a violent pain in the breaft, which the Englifh call the Country Dif- 
temper. The latter is fuppofed to proceed from the cold air being 
drawn into the lungs ; which impeding the vefTels from fpreading 
throughout that organ, hinders the circulation, and renders refpiration 
extremely painful and difficult. They feldom live to a great age, but 
enjoy all their faculties to the laft. 

In their difpofitions they are inild, affable, and good-natured, when 
fober ; but when intoxicated they are loft to every focial quality, and 
difcover the greateft propenfity to quarrelling, theft, and the worft of 
vices. When we view the fair fide of their charadlers, we find them 
kind, courteous, and benevolent to each other, relieving the wants and 
neceflities of their diftreifed brethren with the greateft good-nature, 
either by counfel, food, or cloathing. The good efFefts of this exceU 
lent difpofition are frequently experienced by themfelves ; for, as irj 
their mode of life no one known how foon it may be his own fate to 
be reduced to the verge of extremity, he fecures for himfelf a return 
of kindnefs, fhould he experience that viciffitude. On the other hand 
they are fly, cunning, and artful to a great degree ; they glory in 
every fpecies of furacity and artifice, efpecially when the theft or de- 
ception has been fo well executed as to efcape deteftion. Their love 
to their offspring is carried to a very great height. From the ftate of 
childhood to maturity they feldom or never correfl their children, 
alledging, that when they grow up they will know better of them- 
felves. Neither is this indulgence made a bad ufe of when reflection 
fucceeds the irregularities of youth; on the contrary, fcntiments of 
reverence, gratitude, and love, link theif affcdlions to the authors of 
their being ; and they feldom fail to give the utmoll affiftance to their 
aged parents whenever their imbecility requires it. 

With refpeft to their corporeal abilities, they are almoft without 
exception great walkers ; they patiently endure cold, hunger, and 
fatigue ; and bear all misfortunes with admirable fortitude and refig- 
nation, which enablo-s there bravely to encounter the profpeft of ill, 
and renders the mind fercne under the preflure of adverfity. As their 
country abounds with innumerable herds of deer, elks, and buffaloes, 


New BRITAIN. 23 

tKey frequently make great flaughter among them ; and upon tliefe oc- 
cafions they have no regard to futurity> or providing for an unfuc- 
cefsful day. Whether they happen to be pining under the grafp of 
pinching neceffityj or enjoying themfelves in all the happinefs of 
health and plenty, they kill all they can, having an incontrovertible 
maxim among them, which is, " the more they kill, the more they 
have to kill :" and this opinion, though diametrically oppofite to rea- 
fon or common fenfe, is as pertinacioufly held by them, as his tenets 
are by the moft bigotted enthufiaft. Indeed, they too frequently find. 
it to their cod to be grounded on folly, as they fometimes fuffer ex- 
treme hunger through it; nay, many have been ftarved to death, and 
others have been reduced to the fad neceffity of devouring their own 

As a great part of the Faftory provifions confills of geefe killed by 
the Indians, the Englifh fupply them with powder and fhot for this 
purpofe, allowing them the value of a beaver fkin for every ten geefe 
they kill ; accordingly, after the Indian has got this fupply, he fets off 
from his tent early in the morning into the mardies, where he fets 
himfelfdown, with a degree of patience difficult to be imitated) and' 
being fh'^ltered by a few willows, waits for the geefe. They fhoot 
them flying, and are fo very dexterous at this fport, that a good hun- 
ter will kill, in times of plenty* fifty or fixty in a day. Few Euro- 
peans are able to endure cold, fatigue, hunger, or adverfity in any 
fhape, with an equal degree of magnanimity and compofure to that 
which is familiar to the natives of this country. After being out a 
whole day on a hunt, expofed to the bleakefl winds and mofl penetrat- 
ing cold, and that without the leafl thing to fatisfy the calls of nature, 
an Indian comes home, warms himfelf at the fire, fmoaks a iew pipes 
of tobacco, and then retires to refl, as calm as if in the midfl of plenty ; 
but if he happens to have a family, he cannot always boafl of this 
(equanimity 5 when reduced to extremity, his affection for them pre- 
dominates over his philofophy, if it might be fo called, and it gives 
way to the moft pungent forrow. 

A belief in fome over-ruling invifible power bears a principal fhafe 
in the charafter of thefe unpolifhed Indians. By this he is induced to 
impute every occurrence of his life to fupernatural caufes. His good 
or bad fuccefs in hunting, the welfare of his friends and family, his 
duration in this mortal ftate, &c. all depend upon the will and plea- 
fureof fome invifible agent, whom he fuppofes to prefide over all his 
undertakings : for inftance, one man will invoke a confpicuous ftar, 
another a wolf, one a bear» and another a particular tree; In which he 



imagines the Great Being refides, and influences his good or ill fortune 
in this life. 

The religious fentiments of thefe people, though confufed, are in 
fome refpeas juft. They allow that there is a good Being, and they 
foraetimes nng to him ; but not out of fear or adoration, for he is too 
good, they fay, to hurt them. He is called Kitch-c-mau-e-to^ or the 
Great Chief. They further fay, there is an evil Being, who is al- 
ways plaguing them ; they call him JVhit-ti-co, Of him they are very 
much in fear, and feldom eat any thing, or drink any brandy, without 
throwing fome into the fire io^ Whit-ti-co. If any misfortune befals 
them, they fing to him, imploring his mercy ; and v^hcn in health and 
profperity do the fame, to keep him in good humour. Yet, though 
obfequious fometimes, at others they are angry with him, ei'pecially 
when in liquor ; they then run out of their tents, and fire their guns 
in order to kill him. They frequently perfuade themfelves that they 
fee his track in the mofs or fnow, and he is generally defcribed in 
the moft hideous forms. They believe that both the good and the bad 
Being have many fervants ; thofe of the fonuer inhabiting the air, but 
thofe of the latter walking on the earth. They have likewife an opi- 
nion that this country was once overflowed ; an opinion founded on 
meeting with many fea fhells far inland. 

They have no manner of government or fubordination. The father, 
or head of a famii) , owns no fuperior, nor obeys any command. He 
gives his advice or opinion of things, but at the fame time has no au- 
thority to enforce obedience : the youth of his family follow his di- 
redions, but rather from filial affection or reverence, than in confe- 
iquence of any duty exafted by a iuperior, When feveral tents or fa- 
milies meet to go to war, or to the Failories to trade, they choofe a 
leader, but it is only voluntary obedience they pay to the leader fo 
chofcn ; every one is at liberty to leave him when he pleafes, and the 
notion of a commander is quite obliterated as foon as the voyage is 
over. Merit ALONE gives the title to distinction; and 


\v])o is an experienced hunter ; one who knows the communication 
between the lakes and rivers; one who can make long harangues ; is 
a conjuror; or if he has a family ; fuch a man will not fail of being 
followed by feveral Indians, when they happen to be out in large par- 
ties ; they likewife follow him down to trade at the fettlements : he 
is, however, obliged to fecure their attendance upon this occafion by 
promifcs and rcv/arJs,, as liic regard paid to Lisabilitica is ot too weak 

^ nature 

li i: w E R I t A I N. 25 

a nature to command fubjeftion. In war a mutual refentmcnt ag-iinft 
their enemies forms their union for perpetrating their revenge. Fi-r-i 
fonal couragcy patience under hardJhipSi and a knoiuledge of the manners and 
country of their ad-verfaries, are the qualif cations fought after in the choice 
of a leader. They follow him, whom they have thus chofcn^ with fide- 
lity, and execute his projcfts with alacrity; but their obedience does 
hot proceed from any right in the leader to command,, it is folcly 
founded on his merit, on the afTeftioh of his followers, and their dcfirc 
of fubduiag their enemie?. Thefe fentiments actuate every breaft, and 
augment the union, while in more civilized nations fuch a compaiTi: is 
efFefted by a flavifh fubmiffiou to military laws ; for as the foldier lias 
«0 choice in his commander, it frequently happens that neither his abili- 
ties nor his charadef are calculated to gain their efteem. 

The Indian's method of dividing the time, is by numbering the nights 
elapfed, or to come; thus, if he be alked how long he has been on his 
journey, he w'ill anfwer, " fo many nights." From this nodlurnal di- 
vifion, they proceed to the lunar or monthly divifion, reckoning thirieca 
of thefe in the year, all of which are expreffive of fome remarkable 
event or appearance,- that happens during that revolution of the moon. 

Their method of computing numbers is rather abftrufe, as they reckon 
chiefly by decades ; as follows : — Two tensy three tens, &c. Ten tens, or an 
hundred tens. A few units over or under, are added or fubtrafted. Thu5< 
thirty-two in their tongue is exprefled, by faying three tens and two over. 

Thofe Indians of whom we have now been treating and of whom the 
Peltries are obtained are known by the following namesj i/cr. Th,^ 
Ne-heth-anjc-a^ the AJJinne-poetuc, the FalU the Suffec^ the Black-feeti 
the Paegan, and the Bload Indians^ Thefe are the only Indians witiv 
which the Company trade, aad confequently the only ones whofe man- 
Rers, cuftoms, Szc. are known* 

The laudable zeal of the Moravian clergy induced them, in the year 
1752, to fend miffionarles from Greenland to this country. They 
fixed on Nelhit's harbour for their fettlement 5 but of the lirll party* 
(omz of them were killed, and the others driven away. In 1764, un- 
der the protc-flion of the Britifh government, another attempt was 
made. The miffionaries were well received by the Efquimauxi and 
the million goes on with fuccefs* 


The animals of thefe countries are, the raoofe deef, ftagsi rein Actr, 
bears, tygers, buffaloes, wolves, foxes, beavers, otters, lynxes, martins, 
fquirrels, ermines^ vyiili cat?, and hares. The rein deer pafs in vaft 

Vol. IV, E herds 


herds towards the north in Oclober, feeking the extreme cold. The 
male polar bears rove out at fea, on the floating ice, moft of the 
winter) and till June ; the females lie concealed in the woods, or 
beneath the banks of rivers, till March, when they come abroad with 
their twin cubs, and bend their courfe to the fea in fearch of their 
conforts. Several are killed in their pafTage ; and thofe that are 
wounded fhow vaftfury, roar hideoufly, and bite and throw up in the 
air even their own progeny. The females and the young, when not 
interrupted, continue their way to the fea. In June the males return 
to (hore, and by Aiiguft are joined by their conforts, with their cubs, 
by that time of a confiderable fize. The feathered kinds are, gctfct 
buftards, ducks, growfc, and all manner of wild fowls. Indeed multi- 
tudes of birds retire to this remote country, toLabrador and Newfound- 
land, from places more remotely fouth, perhaps from the Antilles ; and 
fome even of the moft delicate little fp^cies. Moft of them, with 
numbers of aquatic fowls, are feen returning fouthward with their 
young broods to more favourable climates. The favages in fome ref- 
pedls regulate their months by the appearance of birds; and have their 
goofe-month, from the vernal a{)pearance of geefe, from the fouth. 
All the growfe kind, ravens, cinereous crows, titmoufe, and Lapland 
finch, brave the fevereft winter ; and feveral of the falcons and owl* 
feek fhelter in the woods. Of fiQi, there are whales, morfes, feals, cod- 
fifli, and a white fi(h, preferable to herrings; and in their rivers and 
frefh waters, pike, perch, carp, and trout. 

All the quadrupeds of thefe countries are clothed with a clofe, foft, 
warm fur. In fummer there is here, as in other places, a variety in 
die colours of the feveral animals; when that feafon is over, which 
holds only for three months, they all aiTume the livery of winter, and 
every fort of beafts, and moil of their fowls, are of the colour of 
the fnow ; every thing animate and inanimate is white. This is a 
furprifmg phenomenon. But what is yet more furprifing, and what 
is indeed one of the moft. ftriking things, that draw the moft inatten- 
tive to an admiration of the wifdom and goodnefs of Providence, is, 
that the dogs and cats from Britain that have been carried into Hud- 
fon's Bay, on the approach of winter ha\ e entirely changed their ap- 
pearance, and acquired a much longer, fofter, and thicker coat of hair 
than they had originally. 

The knowledge of thefe northern feas and countries was owing to a 
proj-;d Itartcd in England for the Uifcovcry of a north- weft paflage to. 



China and the Eafl: Indies, as early as the year 1576. Since then it 
has been frequently dropped and as often revived, but never yet com- 
pleated ; and from the late voyages of difcovery it feems probable, 
that noprafticable palTage ever can be found. Forbidier difcovered the 
Main of New Britain, of Terra de Labrador, and thcfe ftreights to 
which he has given his name. In ijSj, John Davis failed from Portf- 
mouth, and viewed that and the more northern coafts, but he feems 
never to have entered the bay. Captain Hudfon made three voyages 
on the fame adventure, the firft in 1607, the fecond in 1608, and his 
third and laft in 1610. This bold and judicious navigator entered the 
ftreights that lead into the bay known by his name, coafted a great 
part of it, and penetrated to eighty degrees and a half, into the heart 
of the frozen zone. His ardour for the difcovery not being abated by 
the difficulties he ftruggled with in this empire of winter, and world of 
froft and fnow, he ftayed here until the enfuing fpring, and prepared, 
in the beginning of 161 r, to purfue his difcoveries ; but his crew, who 
fuffered equal hardfhips, without the fame fpirit to fupport them, mu- 
tiniedj feized upon him and feven of thofe who were moft faithful to 
him, and committed them to the fury of the icy feas in an open boat. 
Hudfon and his companions were either fwallowed up by the waves, 
or gaining the inhofpitable coaft, were deftroyed by the favages ; but 
the {hip and the reft of the men returned home. 

Other attempts towards a difcovery were made in 1612 and 166-7; 
and a patent for planting the country, with a charter for a company, 
was obtained in the year 1670. In 1646, Captain Ellis wintered as 
far north as 57 degrees and a half, and Captain Chriftopher at- 
tempted farther difcoveries in :6Ci. But befides thefe voyages, we 
are indebted to the Hudfon's Ear Company for a journey by hmd ; 
which throws much additional light on this matter, by afrordint^^ what 
may be called demonftration, how much farther North, at leaft in fon e \ 
parts of their voyage, fhips rauft go, before they can pafs from one fide 
of America to the other. The northern Indians, who came down io 
the Company's faftorios to trade, had brought to their knowledge a 
river, which, on account of much copper being found near it, had ob- 
tained the name of the Copper Mine River. The Company bein"- de- 
firous of examining into this matter v.ith prccifion, direfled Mr. 
Hearne, a young gentleman in their fervice, and who having been 
brought up for the navy, and ferved in it the war before laft, was ex- 
tremely well qualified for the purpofe, to proceed over land, under the 
convoy of thofe Indians, for that river; which he had orders to fur- 
vey, if poffiblc, quite down to its exit into the fea ; to make obferva. 


tions for fixing the latitudes and longitudes; and to bring honfte ma|¥ 
and drawings, both of it and the countries through which he (hould 

Accordingly Mr. Hearne fet out from Prince of Wales's Fort, oa 
Churchill river, latitude 58° 472' north, and longitude 94" 72' weft 
from Greenwich, on the 7th of December, 1770. Mr. Hearne on the 
J 3th of July reached the Copper Mine river, and found it all the way, 
even to its exit into the fea, incumbered with fhoais and falls, and 
emptying itfelf into it over a dry flat of the fhore, the tide being then 
out, which feemed, by the edges of the ice, to rife about twelve or 
fourteen feet. This rife, on account of the falls, will carry it but a 
very fmall way within the river's mouth, fo that the water in it haij 
not the leaft bracKilh tafte, Mr. Hearne is, nevenhelefs, fure of the 
place it emptied itfelf into being the fea, or a branch of it, by the 
quantity of whalebone and feal ftins which the Efcjuimaux had at their 
tents ; and alfo by the number of feals which he faw upon the ice. Th§ 
fea, at the river's mouth, wfis full of iflands and flioals, as far as he 
could fee, by the alfiftance of a pocket telefcope ; and the ice was not 
then (July 17th) broke up, but thawed away only for about three quar- 
ters of a mile from the lliore, and for a little way round the iiland 
and (lioals which lay off the river's mouth. Bi^t he had the moft ex- 
tenfive view of the fea when he was about eight miles up the river, 
from which ftation the extreme parts of it bore N. W. by W, and 
N. E. ■ . ' . 

By the time Mr. Hearne had finifned his furvey of the river, which 
was about one o'clock in the morning on the 1 8th, there came on a very 
thick fog and dri'zzling rain ; and as he had found the river and fea, in 
every refpeft unlikely to be of any utility, he thought it unneceffary 
to wait for fair ♦ -athcr, to determine the latitude more exaftly by obr 
fcrvation ; but by the extraordinary care he took in obferving the 
courfes and dii^ances, v/alking from Congcccithanx'huchaga, where he had 
two very good obfervations, he thinks the latitude may be depended 
on williin 10' at the utmoll. It appears from the map which Mr. 
Hearne conftrufted of this fingular journey, that the mouth of the 
Copper Mine river lies in latitude 72^ N. and longitude 25'' W. from 
Churchill liver; that is, about i ig'^ W. of Greenwich. Mr. Hearne's 
journey back from the Copper Mine river to Churchill, lafted till June 
30th, 1772 ; fo that he was abfcnt almod a year and feveu months. Thq 
u!:>paralleled hardfliipshe foifcred, and the efTcntial fcrvice he performe<^ 
have with a fiiitable reward from his mailers. He has been feveral 
years governor ol Piin.^e of Whiles 's Fort on Churchill river, where 
,]ic was tikcn by, the Frencii in 17S2, 



> -Tliough the adventurers failed in the original purpofefor which they 
navigated this bay, their projed, even in its failure, has been of ad- 
vantiige to England. The vaft countries which furround Hudfon's 
Bay, as we have already obferved, abound with animals, whofe fur and 
ikins are excellent. In i^yo, a charter was granted to a company, 
which at prefent confift of only feven perfons, for the exclufive trade 
ito this bay, and they have artcd under it ever fince with great benefit 
to the private men who compofe the company, though comparatively 
with little advantage to Great Britain. 

Prince Rupert was their firft Governor; the Duke of Albemarle, 
Lord Craven, Lord Arlington, and fevprai other noble perionages, con- 
ftituted the firft committee. The tenor of their charter is as full, ample, 
and comprehenfive, as words can well make it ; and, as if they fufpedled 
the intrufion of fome adventurers on their territories, to participate ia 
this valuable trade, the moft fevere penalties, with forfeiture oforo- 
perty, are laid on all thofe, who fhall haunt, frequent, or trade upoa 
their coafts ; how far their fuccelTors have been entitled to thefs exclu- 
live immunities, or how far, their confined manner of carrying on 
the trade has proved benefi.cial to the country, we fhall endeavour to 
point out. 

The firft traders to thefe parts adled upon principles much more lau- 
dable and benevolent, than their fucceffors feem to have been actuated 
by. They appear to have had the good of the country at heart ; and 
lo have endeavoured by every equitable means, to render their com- 
merce profitable to the mQther country. Their inflruftions to their 
faftors were full of fentiments of Chriftianity, and contained direftions 
for their ufing every means in their power, to reclaim the uncivilized 
Indians from a flate of barbarifrn, and to inculcate in their rude minds 
the humane precepts of the gofpel. They were at the fame time ad- 
monifhed to trade with them equitably, and to take no advantage of 
their native fimplicity. They were further inflrufted to explore the 
country, and to reap fuch benefit from the foil and produce thereof, 
as might redound to the intereft of the Englifh nation, as well as contri- 
bute to their own emolument. And laitly, they were diredled to be 
particularly careful in feeing that the European fervants behaved or- 
derly, and lived in fobriety and temperance, obferving a proper vene- 
ration for the fervice of God, which was ordered to be colie^ively 
performed at every feafonable opportunity, 

Thefe were injundioni worthy the exalted ftations and rank in life of 
thofe who had the firft diredion of the affairs of the Company; and 
refledled much honour on their characters, as men and chriftians : and 



had thcfe praife-worthy eftabliHiments been adhered to, the coimtrjr 
granted them might at this day have been a real advantage to Great 
Britain. But inftead of encouraging the trade, by a mild, equiiable, 
and engaging deportment towards the natives; — inftead of ingratiating 
thcmfelvei by affability and condefcenfion with a hannlefs people, the 
Hadfon's Bay Company ufe them with undeferved rigour, cauling theoi 
frequently to be beat and maltreated, although they have come fome 
hundreds Of miles in order to barter their (kins, and procure a few 
neceffaries to guard againft the feverity of the approaching winter: 
owing to this conduft the trade has materially declined of late years. 

Another reafon why the Company's trade has declined, is a want of 
fpirit in themfelves, to pufh it on with that vigour the importance of 
the conteft dcferves. The merchants from Canada have been heard to 
acknowledge, that was the Hndfon's Bay Company to profecute their 
inland trade in a fpirited manner, they muft be foon obliged to give up 
all thoughts of penetrating into the country; as from the vicinity of 
the Company's fadories to the inland parts, they can afford to under- 
fel them in every branch. 

To explain this emulation between the Company and the Canadian 
traders, it will be neccilary to review the (late of the Company in the 
3'ear 177 J. About that time the Canadian traders from Montreal, ac- 
tuated by a laudable fpirit of induftry end adventure, and experiencing 
The pecuniary advantages that refulted from their exertions, had become 
fo numerous and indefatigable at the head of the rivers which lead to 
the Companv's fettlements, that the trade of the latter was in a great 
meafiire cut ofTfrom its ufual channel. The Indians l>eing fupplied 
v^ith evcr^' thing they could willi forat their own doors, had no longer 
occalion, as they hitherto had done, to build canoes, and paddle feveral 
hundred miles, for the fake of cultivating a commerce with the Company j 
in which peregrination they were frequently expofed to much danger 
from huitger ; fo much fo, that at one time feven canoes of upland In- 
dians pcrilhed on their return to their own country. 

Ever lince the .ibove period, the Cr.nadian adventurers have annually 
ir>crcafed in the upland country, much to their own emolument, and 
the great lofs of the Company : who, it may be faid, arc fleeping at 
the edge of the fe:'., without fpirit, and without vigour or inclination 
tp allert th^t right, which their exclufivc charter, according to their 
(?-r,Y accon.'ity entitles them to. 

It is true, the Hudfon's Bay Company have at this tiine a ^^w efta-. 
lilithnients in the interior cyuntj^/ ; but tlufo are CJrried on in fuch a 

NEW n R I T A 1 N. 31 

linguid manner, that their exertions have hitherto proved inadequate 
to the purpofc ot fupplanting their opponents. 

The Company fignify to their Faftors, tliat they have an indifputs- 
ble right to all the territories about Hudfon's Bay, not only including 
the Straits and Bay, with all the rivers, inlets. Sec. therein, but like- 
wife to all the countries, lakes, Sec. indefinitely to the weftward, 
explored and unexplored. They therefore ftigmatize the Canadian 
merchants with the infulting epithets of pedlars, thieves, and interlo- 
pers ; though the quantity of furs imported by themfelves bears no coin- 
parifon to thofe fent from Canada. If this unbounded cJaim, to which 
they pretend, be founded upon jultice, why, in the name of equity do 
they not afiert thefe pretenfions by a proper application to the Britilh 
Parliament to remove the induftrious pedlars, whom they would fcem 
to look upon with fuch ineffable contempt, and prevent their any longei* 
encroachisg on their territories ; but the (hock they received from the 
parliamentary application of the patriotic Mr. Dobbs, in the year 1749, 
has given them a diftate to parliamentary inquiries. They know the 
weaknefs of their claim, and the inftability of their pretenfions ; it is 
therefore their intereft to hide from an inqulfitive but deluded nation, 
every inveftigation which might tend to bring to light the futility of 
their proceedings. 

If the Canadian traders can adduce any profit to themfelves by pro- 
fecuting this inland bufmefs, what are not the Hudfon's Bay Company 
enabled to do, with every advantage on their fide, would they profe- 
cute the trade with vigour ? 

York Fort at this time has four fubordinate fettlements; at which 
fettlements, conjointly, the Company allow one hundred fervants, whofe 
\vages amount to about, one thoufand eight hundred and fixty pounds per 
annum ; befides a iloop of fixty tons, that makes a voyage once a year 
between York Fort and Severn Faftories. la the year 1 748, the com- 
plement of men at tliat fettlement was no more than twenty-five, whofc 
wages amounted to four hundred and feventy pounds per annum, and 
the trade then ftood at thirty thoufand ikins one year with another. 
The other eftablilhments which the Company maintain in the Bav, have 
fuffered the like proportional change, all decreafing in trade, and 
bearing additional incumbrances. 

To exhibit at one view a ftate of their feveral eftabllfliments in tliC 
8ay at prefcnt, the follovvipg table h fubjoincd. 



T A B L E. 


La. X. 

Lo. W. 

Trade on 



Ships cijn- 
figned to. 

Sloops in the 


York Fort 1 
Severn Houfe / 
Albany Fort 
Moofe Fort "1 
Eaftma'in J 


57 10 
56 12 

52 18 
51 28 

53 24 

94 30 
93 00 
88 57 
85 18 

83 15 
78 50 


> 25,000 


y 7>ooo 




(hip tons 

lof 250 
> lof 250 

I lof 280 

rtiip tons 

I of 70 
> I of 60 

I of 70 
I of 70 









The following is the ftandard of trade, by which the Governor ot 
Faftor, is ordered by the Company to trade with the natives *. 



Glafs beads 


I a 

; 2 

Orricc lace 


lias I 

China ditto 


Brafs rings 


3 1 

Brafs kettks 



I I 

Coarfe cloth 



Tobacco boxes 

I I 




Awl blades 

8 I 

Tobacco Brazil 



Box barrels 

3 I 

Ditto leaf 


Hawks bells 


11 I 

Ditto Eng. roll 


Sword blades 


I I 

Check ihirts 



Ice chiffeis 

I I 

White ditto 


Gun wbrms 

4 » 

Yara ftockings 



Coarfe hats 

I 4 




Small leather trunl- 


I 4, 









I I 






I 4 





12 t 




6 I 




Brafe collars 

I i 




Fire fteels 

3 ' 





2 I 

Small burning glaflcs 




] 1 



1 5 


* This is irttendcd 

to keep 

up thf appearance of a regular fettled plan of tr.'tdc ; but 

thniiih this farce ma\ 

f be ula 


[Tto th 

>fc who have not had thr 


tunlties of 

knowing; the dec-.ept.ion, it will wothav.^ sftas eflgil wpon a pcrfon any way acquainted 



Notwithftanding this pretended ftandard is in itfelf I'ufficiently hard 
«pon the Indians, and difcouraging to the trade, yet the fadlors, and 
the company, in conjunftion, do not think it fo ; for out of this a 
pernicious ovcrphis trade muft be raifed ; which, as Mr. Robfon 
juftly obferves, " is big with iniquity, and ftriking at the very root of 
their trade as a chartered company :" it is intended to augment the 
emoluments of the governor, at the expenfe of juftice and common 
honefty : it opprefies the Indian, who lives a raoll wretched life, and 
encounters a variety of difficulties, cold, hunger, and fatigue, to pro- 
cure a few neceflaries for himfelf and indigent family. 

This overplus trade, as it is called, is carried on in the following 
manner ; for inftance ; fuppofe an Indian would trade one pound of 
glafs beads, it is fet down in the ftandard at two beaver Ikins ; but 
the conicientious factor will demand three, or pei haps four beaver 
(kins for it ; if the Indian alks for a blanker, he muft pay eight bea- 
vers ; and if he would purchafea gallon of brandy, he muft give after 
the rare of eight beaverlkins for ir, as it is always one half, and fome^ 
times two-thirds water. The confcqueuce of this griping way of trade 
is in the end very hurtful to thcmfclves, as the Canadians, in the in- 
terior country, underfcU them in every article. 

Before the Canadian merchants purfued the fur trade with fuch di- 
ligence as they now do through the lakes, and had penetrated into the 
interior parts of Hudfon's Bay, a great number of Indians ufed annu- 
ally to come down to the conipany's.fettlements to barter their Ikins. 
And though the company have now in a great meafure loft the benefit 
of this lucrative trattic, it may not be amifs to mention the manner in 
which the Indians profecute their voyages to the fa<ftories. 

In the month of March, the upland Indians afiemble on the banks 
of a particular river or lake, the nomination of which had been agreed 
•on by common confent, before they Teparated for the winter. Here 
they begin to build their canoes, which .ire generally completed very 
foon after the river ice breaks. They then conviience their voyage, 
but without any regularity, all ftriving to be f( reraoft ; bccaufe thole 
who are firil have the bcft chi-nca of procuring food. During the 
voyage, each leader canvaffej, v^irh all manner of art and diligence, 
for people to join his gang ; influencing fome by prefents, and oincrs 
by promifes ; for the more canoes he has under his comttjand, the 
greater he appears at the factory. 

Being come near their journey's end, they all put aftiore; the wo- 
men to go in the woods to gather pine-bruiU for the bottoms of the 

Vol. IV. F tents j 


tents; while the leaders fmoke together, and regulate the proceflion. 
This being fettled, they re-embark, and foon after arrive at the fac- 
tory. If there is but one captain, his fituation is in the center of the 
canoes ; if more, they place themfelves on the wings ; and their ca- 
noes are diftinguifhed by having a fmall flag hoifted on a ftick, and 
placed in the ftern. 

When they arrive within a few hundred yards of the fort, they dif- 
charge their f JwJing-pieces, to compliment the Englifli ; who, in re- 
turn, falute them by firing two or three fraall cannon. The leaders 
feldom concern themfelves with taking out the bundles, but the other 
men will alTifl the women. The fa£tor being informed that the Indians 
are arrived, fends the trader to introduce the leaders with their lieu- 
tenants, who areufually their eldeftfons or neareft relations. Chairs 
are placed for them to fit down on, and pipes, &c. are introduced. 
During the time the leader is fmoking, he fays very little, but as foon 
as this is over, he begins to be more talkative ; and fixing his eyes 
jmmoveably on the ground, he tells the faftor how many canoes he 
has brought, what Indians he has feen, aflcs how the Englifhmen do, 
and fays he is glad to fee them. After this the governor bids him 
tvelcome, tells him he has good goods and plenty, and that he loves 
the Indians, and will be kind to them. The pipe is by this time re- 
moved, and the converfation becomes free. 

During this vifit, the chief is dreft out at the cxpenfe of the fadory 
in the following manner: a coarfe cloth coat, either red or blue, lined 
with baize, and having regimental cuffs ; and a waiflcoat and breeches 
of baize, the whole ornamented with orris lace. He is alfo pre- 
fentcd with a white or check fliirt ; his ftockings are of yarn, one of 
them red; the other blue, and tied below the knee with worited gar- 
ters ; his Indian flioes are fometimes put on, but he frequently walks 
in his flocking-feet ; his hat is coarfe, and bedecked with three oftrich 
feathers of various colours, and a worflcd fafli tied round the crown ; 
a fmall filk handkerchief is tied round his neck, and this completes 
his drefs. The lieutenant is alfo prefented with a coat, but it has no 
lining; he is likewife provided with a fhirt and cap, not unlike thofe 
worn by mariners. 

The gueiis being now equipped, bread and pi'iines are brought and 
ff't before the captain, of which he takes care to fill his pockets, be- 
fore they are carried out to tie fhared in his tent ; a two gallon keg of 
brandy, with pipes and tobacco for himft-lf and followers, are like- 
wife fet before him. He is now co^du^ed from the fort to his tert 



hi the following manner : In the front a halberd and enfign are car- 
ried ; next a drummer beating a march ; then feveral of the faftory 
fervants bearing the bread, prunes, pipes, tobacco, brandy, &c. 
Then comes the captain, walking quite ere£t and ftately, fmoking 
his pipe, and converfing with the factor. After this follows the lieu- 
tenant, or any other friend, who had been admitted into the fort with 
the leader. They find the tent ready for their reception, and with 
clean pine-brulh and beaver coats placed for them to fit on. Here 
the brandy, S;c. is depofited, and the chief gives orders to fome rcf- 
pedable perfon to make the ufual diftribution to his comrades. After 
this the fader takes his leave, and it is not long before they are all in- 
toxicated ; when they give loofe to every fpccies of diforderly tumult, 
fuch as Tinging, crying, fighting, dancing, &c. ; and fitty to one but 
fome one is killed before the morning. Such are the fad effedls of the 
vile compofition they are furniflied with, upon thefe occafions. 

After continuing in a ftate of intoxication, bordering on madnefs, 
for two or three days, their mental faculties return by degrees, and 
they prepare themfelves for renewing the league of friendfhip, by 
fftioking the calimut ; the ceremony of which is as follows : A pipe 
made of ftone is filled with Brazil tobacco, mixed with a herb fome- 
thing like European box. The ilem of the pipe is three or four feet 
long, and decorated with various pieces of lace, bears claws; and ea- 
gles talons, and likewife with variegated feathers, the fpoils of thc' 
mofl: beauteous of the feathered tribe. The pipe being fixed to the 
ftem and lighted, the faftor takes it in both his hands, and with much 
gravity rifes from his chair, and points the end of the (ierti to 'the Eaft, 
or fun-rife, then to the Zenith, afterwards to the Weft, and then per- 
pendicularly down to the Nadir. After this he takes three or four 
hearty whiflfs, and having done fo, prefents it to the Indian leader, 
from whom it is canned round to the whole party, the women ex- 
cepted, who are not permitted to fmoke out of the facredpipe. Wheu 
it is entirely fmoaked out, the fa6lor takes it again, and having tv/irled 
it three or four times over his head, lays it deliberately on the table ; 
which being done, all the Indians return him thanks by a kind of 
fighing out the word Ho. 

Though the above ceremony made ufe of by the Indians, in. 
fmoking the calimut, may appear extremely ridiculous and incom- 
prehenfible, yet, when we are made acquainted with their ideas in this 
refpeft, the apparent abfurdity of the cuftom will vanifti. By this 
ceremony they mean to fignify to all perfons concerned, that v.hilft 

Fa tfcs 


the fun fiiall vifit the different parts of the world, and make day amf 
night ; peace, firm friendfliip, and brotherly love, Ihall be ertablifhed 
between th& Englifli and their country, and the fame on their part. 
By twirling the pipe over the head, they further intend to imply, that 
all perfons of the two nations, wherefoever they may be, fliall be in- 
cluded in the fricndfliip and brotherhood now concluded or renewed. 
After this ceremony is over, and a further gratification of bread, 
prunes, &c. is prefented, the leader makes a fpeech, generally to the 
following purport : 

*' You told me lafT year to bring many Indians to trade, which I 
*' promifed to do ; you fee I have not lied ; here are a great many 
*' young men come vv^ith me ; ufe them kindly, 1 fay ; let them trade 
*' good goods ; let them trade good goods, I fay ! We lived hard lafc 
** winter and hungry, the powder being fliort meafure and bad ; 
*' being fliort meafure and bad, I fay ! Tell your fervants to fill the 
*' meafure, and not to put their thumbs within the brim ; take pity 
** on us, take pity on us, I fay I We paddle a long way to fee you ; 
*'. we love the Englifli. Let us trade good black tobacco, moift and 
" hard twifled ; let us fee it before it is opened. Take pity on us ; 
*' take pity on us, I fay ! The guns are bad, let us trade light guns, 
*' fmall in the hand, and well fliaped, with locks that will not freeze 
*' in the winter, and red gun caies. Let the young men have more 
*' than meafui'e of totecco ; cheap kettles, thick, and high. Give 
*' U3 good meafure of cloth ; let us f<..e the old meafure ; do you mind 
**■ me ? The young men prove they love you, by coming fo far to fee 
*' you ; take pity, take pity, I fay ; and give them good goods ; they 
*' like to drefs and be fine. Uo you luiderftand me ?" 

As foon as the captain has finiflied his fpeech, he, with his followers, 
proceed to look at the guns and tobacco ; the former they examine 
with the moft minute attention. When this is over the_v trade their 
furs promifcuoufly ; the leader being fo far indulged, as to be admit- 
ted into the trading room all the time, if he dofires it. 

It is evident that the fur and peltry trade might be carried on to a 
much greater extent, were it not entirely in the hands of this exclu- 
five company, whofe intcrefted, not to fay iniquitous fpirit, has been 
the fubjedt of long and jull complaint. 

It will, wc doubt not, feem very mvflerious to the generality of peo- 
ple, that the company do not exert themfelvesto turn the riches of this 
country to their adv;mtnge, when they alone are to reap the benefit 
of their exertions. People will naturally be led to conclude fj o.n ;;it:ir 


fonduft, that what writers have faid on thisfubjedl is devoid of truth, 
and mere chimeras.; but this is for want of knowing the pcciihar 
views of the company, their affei5tion for their long-foftercd mono- 
poly, and that fingiilar obfcurity which invelops their whole coafti- 
tution, nay, the whole of their mercantile tranfa6lions. 

The company do not entertain the leaft doubt, but if the country 
they poUefs was properly explored by perfons of ability, valuable dif- 
coveries might be made ; but this they think may be fo far from re- 
dounding to their intereft, that it might have acontran.' effeft, by en- 
couraging adventurers to petition for liberty to partake of thefc dif- 
coveries, and thereby occafion an inveftigation to take place, which 
would probably lliake the foundation of their charter. This is not 
all ; as the company ronfifts at prefent but of feven perfons ; this 
fmall number ■-w'fcly think, thai: as long as they can fliare a comfort- 
able dividend, there is no occnfion for their embarking in additional 
expenfes, in order to profecute difcoveries which might tranfpire to 
the world, and endanger the whole. 

• The limits of the bay and Irraits comprize a very confiderable ex- 
tent; the foil of which;, in many parts, is capable of much improve- 
ment by agriculture and induitr}-. The countries abound with mofk 
kinds of quadrupeds, &c. whofe fkins are of great value. The nu-/ 
roerous inland rivers, lakes, &c. produce filh of almoft every fpecies; 
and in the feas in and about the ftraits, and the northern parts of the 
bay, white and black whales, fea-horfes, bears, and feais, are killed 
in great numbers by the Efquimaux, whofe implementc; for this pur- 
pofeare exceedingly fimple. What advantage might not then arifcto 
the nation from this branch of trade alone, were it laid open ? If able 
harpooners were fent on this employ, with fufficient affiftants, and 
properly encouraged, greater profits would accrue from this filhery, 
than from all the peltr)' at prtfent imported by the company. The 
difcovery of numberlefs fine harbours, and an acquaintance with the 
furroTinding country, which at prefent is entirely unknown to us, would, 
in all likelihood, be tiie confsjqnence of ihefe feas being more fre- 
quented than they are. And indeed if ever the forts and fettlements 
on the American boundary line are furrended according to the treaty 
of peace, England has no other means in her hands to counterpoife 
the fiiperior advantages the Americans will then poffefs in the fiir 
trade, than to throw the trade to Hudfon's bny open, and thus deftroy 
a difgraceful monopoly, or to incorporate with it by a new charter 
the merchants trading to Canada, and thus ijifufe into it a frefli por- 


tion of mercantile vigour : by this means an extenlive intercourfe 
with nations, to which we at pi^fent are almoft ftrangers, might be 
opened, and a country explored whofe refources may equal if not fur- 
pafs thofe of the country round Canada. 

If it be objected to this, that the vafl: quantities of ice in the ftraits 
mufl impede a veflel from making difcoveries, weanfwer, that many 
years the ice is fo infignincant in quantity as not to obftruct the pafTage 
of the iliips in the leaft ; and in thofe feafons when it is thickeft, it is 
diffolved and difperfed in the ocean long before the return of the 
iliips in September. 

Even in the very confined manner in which the company carrj' on 
this trade, it is far from being inconfiderable in value, though their 
fliips feldom flop but a very Ihort time frtr the purpofe of trading 
with the Efquimaux ; they employ three fliips annually, which are 
manned with feventy-five men. 

The company exports commodities to the value of about ten thou- 
fand pounds, and bring home returns to the value of twenty-nine 
thoufand three hundred and forty pounds, which yield to the revenue 
about three thoufand feven hundred and thirty- four pounds'. This in- 
cludes the fifliery in Hudfon's bay. That this commerce, fmall as it 
is, affords immenfe'profits to the company, and even fome advantages 
to Great Britain in general, cannot be denied ; for the commodities ex- 
changed with the Indians for their fkins and furs, are all manufadtured 
in Britain ; and as the Indians are not very nice in their choice, fuch 
things are fent of which there is the greateft plenty, and which, to ufe 
a mercantile phrafe, are drugs. Though the woikmanfliip happens to 
be in many refpcifts fo deficient, that no civilized people would take it, 
it may be admired among the Indians. On the other hand, the fkins 
and furs brought home in return afford articles for trading with many 
nations of Europe to great advantage. Thefe circumftances prove 
the immenfe benefit that would redound to Britain, by throwing open 
the trade to Hudfon's bay, fince even in its prefent rcilrained flate it 
is fo advantageous.* The only attempt made to trade with Labrador, 
has been directed towards the fifliery. Great Britain has no fettle- 
naent there. The annual produce of the fifhcjy amounts to upwards 
of forty-nine thoufand pounds. 

* la May 17S2 all tlic foits and fortlemcnts belonging to the Hudfon's Iiay company 
were delkoycd by ihc Fiench, ihc daiiugc; fulbined wei'- ia:cJ at five luindicd thoufand 

t NOVA^ 

( 39 ) 




X HESE provinces are fituated between 43° 30' and 49° north lati-. 
tude and 60" and 67" eaft longitude from London, or 8° and i5°eaft 
longitude from Philadelphia. Their length is four hundred miles, 
and their breadth three hundred. They are bounded on the north, by 
the river St. Lawrence ; on the eaft, by the gulf of St. Lawrence, 
which waflies its coafts one hundred and ten leagues in extent, from 
the gut of Canfo, at its entrance into the gulf, to cape Rozier, which 
forms the fouth part of the river St. Lawrence, and by the gut of 
Canfo, which divides it from cape Breton ; on the fouth, it iswaflied 
by the Atlantic ocean, having a fea coaft of ninety leagues, from 
cape Canfo, eaft, to cape Sables, weft, which forms one part of the 
entrance into the bay of Fundy, which alfo forms a part of its fouth- 
ern boundary ; weft, by a part of Lower Canada, and the diftriit of 

Notwithftanding the forbidding appearance of this country, it 
was here that fome of the firft European fettlements were made. 
The firft grant of lands in it was given by James the Firft to his fe- 
cretarv', Sir William Alexander, from whom it had the name of 
Nova-Scotia, or New-Scotland ; fince then it has frequently changed 
Jiands, from one private proprietor to another, and from the French 
to the Englifti nation backward and forward. It was not confirmed to 
the Englifti, till the peace of Utrecht, and their defign in acquiring 
it does not feem to have arifen fo much from any profpeift of diretSt 
profit to be obtained by it, as from an apprehenfton that the French, 
by poft!effing this province, might have had it in their power to an- 
Iioy the other Britifli fettlements. LTpon this principle, three thoufand 
families were tranfported in 1749, at the charge o^' the government, 
into this country, who built and fettled the town of Halifax. 

T4ie tra6i^f country within thefe limits, known by the name of 
Nova-Sfotia, oc New-Scotland, was, in 1784, divided into two pro- 


vinces, viz. New-Brunfwick, on the north-weft, and Nova-Scotia^ 
on the fouth-eaft. The former comprehends that part of the old pro- 
vince of Nova-Scotia, which lies to the northward and weftward of a 
line drawn from the mouth of the river St. Croix, through the center 
of the bay of Fundy to bay Verte, and thence into the gulf of St. 
|:awrence, including all lands within fix leagues of the coaft. The 
reft is the province of Novn-Scotia, to which is annexed, the ifland 
of St. John's, which lies north of it, in the gulf of St. Lawrence. 


■ During a great part of the year, the atmofphere is clouded with 
thick fog, which renders it unhealthy for the inhabitants ; and four 
cr five months it is intenfely cold, A great part of this country lies 
in foreft, and the foil, in many parts, is thin and barren. On the 
banks of the rivers, however, and fome other parts, the foil is very 
good, producing large crops of Englifli grafs, hemp, and flax: many 
of the bays, and fait water rivers, and fome parts of the fea coaft, are 
bordered with fine trafts of fait marfli ; but the inhabitants do not 
raife provifions enough fur home confumption. 


The rivers which water this coimtry we fiiall mention in conneftioa 
•with the different counties in which they principally flow, a few, how- 
ever, call for feparate notice. The rivers Rifconge and Nipifiguit run 
fromweft to eaft intoChaleur and Nipifiguit bays, whjch communicate 
with the gulf of St. Lawrence. The river St. Croix (which is the true 
St. Croix, is yet undetermined) empties into Pafliunaquoddy bay, and 
forms apart of the boundary between New-Brunfwick and Maine. St. 
John's is the largeft river in the province. It empties into the north 
fide of the bay of Fundv, and is navigable for vefiels of fifty tons, 
fixty miles, and for boats upwards of two hundred miles. This is a 
common route to Quebec. The banks of this river, enriched by the 
sniuial frefliets, are excellent land. About thirty miles from the 
raouth of this river commences a fine level country, covered with 
iarge trees of timber of various kinds. Mafts, from twenty to thirty 
inches in diameter, have been cut on this trad. The tide Hows, in 
this river, eighty or ninety miles. It furnilhes the inhabitants with 
Salmon, bafs, and fturgeon. Near fort Howe, the river fuddenly nar- 
rows, and occafions a fall at certain times of tide, like that at LcJndou 



The coaft of thefe provinces is indented with numerous bay?, and 
eommodious harbours. The principal, as you defcend foutherly from 
the mouth of St. Lawrence river, are Gafpee, Chaleur, Vcrtc, which 
is feparated from the bay of Fundy by a narrow ifthmus of abou' eigh- 
teen miles wide ; cape and harbour of Canfo, forty leagues^ eaftward 
of Halifax. Chedabu6lo bay about ten leagues north-weft of Canfo. 
Chebu£to bay, on which {lands the town of Halifax. The bay of 
Fundy, which extends fifty leagues into the country, in which thf. ebb 
and flow of the tide is from forty-five to fixty feet. Chenigto bay is at 
the head of Fundy bay. Pairamaquoddy bay borders on the dilbicl of 
Elaine, and receives the waters of St. Croix river. At the entrance 
of this bay is an ifland, granted to feveral gentlemen iu Liverpool in 
Lancafliire, who named it Campobello. A: a very conridciabte ex- 
penfe, they attempted to form a fettlcment there, but failed. On fe- 
veral other illands in this bay there are fettlemcnts made by people 
from Maffachufets. Among the lakes in thefe provinces, which are 
very numerous, and many as yet without names, is Grand lake, in the 
province of New-Brunfwick, near St. John's river, about thirty-miles 
Jong, and eight or ten broad, and in fome places forty fathoms deep. 

The principal capes are capp Canfo, on the weft fide of the entrance 
into Chedabutto bay, and cape Sables, on the eaft fide of clip ^ntranfft 
into the bay of Fundy. 


Thefe in 17S3, were as follows ; 

Vol. IV. G CcuvtUi 



loiunjhifi, I Byiubrjm fettled. 

Hants, I Windfor 
on the river Ll'almouth 
Avon. I Newport 

London Der. 



Ea!^ern part 







Kings, Cornwallis 

on the Bafon of ^ 
Miner. Horton 

on Annapolis 


f Granville 



Cumber- „ , ... 
, ..-^ SackviUe 

land, I 

at the head of r Amherft 
bay of Fundy. HilKboro' 


on the river St. 
John's, north 
ihnre of bay of 


fouth fide of 
bay of Fundy, 







V •'u'lbury 

I St. Ann's 

I Willmot 

J Newton 
J Mau!;erville 

(Sable Ifl.) 


' Lunenburgh 



Avon or Pigiguit 

}St. Croix 

lal^ 1 
j vef 

irito the Ay6n, 
except the 
lal^ navigable. 
Jav. 40 m. for 
velT. of 60 tons. 

\ Irilh and Scotch 

J from New-Eng- 

» Shebbenaccadie. Boatable, 


fett. from Irel. 
and New-Engl. 
do. a fine town- 
^Ihip 30 miles 
in leng. on the 
bay of Fundy. 
4: families of 

fettled from N. 
Eng. ScYorkfli. 
fettled from N. 
»f Ire. N. Eng. 
and Torklhirc. 

Percau, fmal! 

Habitant, navig. for veff. of 40 tons 

a fmall diftance. 
Canaid, navig. for veff. of 160 tons 
> 3 or 4 miles. 
Cornwallis, navig. for veff. of 100 

tons 5 miles, for vef. of jo toiis 10 

Salmon river.* 

Annapolis, navigable for fliips of 

any burthen 10 miles — of 100 tons 

f 15 miles ; tide flows 30 miles, 

paiirable in boats to within twenty 

miles of Horton. 



An Lac 
Ln Plahche 
'i Macon 
J Mem rem 
I Percoudia 


1 which are nav. 3 or 4 
I miks for veffels of 
J 5 tons. rivers. 

\ navigable 4 or 5 mil. 

} navigable by boats to 
its head iz miles. 

} fettled from 

Scots & Acad. 

} Quakers from 

} Irilh forpacrly, 
now Gerrnans 
New-En Inland, 
3 faniilie.s Dnly. 

, St Jphp's, already dgfcribed. 

"• None 

• None. 

* There are fctllcmcnts of Acadianj on all thefe rivers, whofc banks are good land. 



Principal f oivNs. 

Halifax is the capital of the province of Nova-Scotia; It ftands 
on Chebufto bay, commodioufly lituated for the fifhery, and has a 
communication with other parts of this province and Nev^-Brunfwick 
by land and water carriage. It has a good harbour, where a fmall 
fquadron of fliips of war lie during the winter, and in the lummer 
protects the fifliery. The town has an entrenchment, and is ftrength- 
ened with forts of timber. It is faid to contain fifteen or fijitecn thou- 
fand inhabitants. 

Shelburne on port Rofeway, near cape Sables, was fupp'ofed, 
in 1783, to contain fix hundred families ; fince that time it has became 
lefs populous* Guylborough formerly called Manchefter, fituated 
on Chedabufto bay, about ten leagues north-weft of cape Canfo, con- 
tained, in 1783, about two hundred and fifty families. Rawdon 
forty miles from Halifax, has about fixty houfes. Annapolis on the 
•aft fide of Fundy bay, has one of the fineft harbours in the world. 
In other refpe<Sl:s it is a poor, inconfiderable place. 

Fredericktown, about ninety miles up St. John's river, is the 
capital of the province of New-Brunfwick, 


There are federal forts in thefe provinces : thefe are fort Edward 
at Windfor, capable of containing two hundred men ; Annapolis,- in! 
its prefeht ftate, one hundred ; Cumberland, three hundred ; fort 
Howe, on St. John's river, one hundred : befides which there are 
barracks, inclofed in a ftockade at Cornwallis, for about fifty men. 


*f he exports frorri Great Britain to this countrjir cohfift cliiefly 6f 
linen and wdollen cloths, and other neceflaries for wear, of fiftiing 
tackle, arid rigging for fhips. The amount of exports, at an average 
of three years, before the new fettlements, was about twenty-fix thou- 
fand five hundred pounds. The only articles obtained in exchange 
are, timber and the produce of the fifliery, which, at a like average, 
amounted to thirty-eight thoufand pounds. Bnt from the late increafe 
of inhabitants, it is fuppofed that they will now ereft faw mills, and 
endeavour to fupply the Weft-India iflands with luftiber of every kind, 
as well as the produce of the fifhery, which will be a profitable ar- 

G i. tide 


tide to both countries. The whole population of Nova-Scotia and 
the iflands adjoining, is eftimated at fifty thoufmd. This eftimate 
t is fuppofed is contiderably too large. Recent accounts of thefe fet- 
itlements reprefent them as in a declining flate, having great numbers 
of the houfes built in the new towns uninhabited, and confiderably re- 
duced in value. 


The Indians here are the Micmaek?, and the tribe called the 
Marechites. The former inhabit the eaficrn (hore, between Halifax 
and cape Breton; between Cumberland counry and the north-eafl 
coaft of the province, towards Chaleur bay ; about the heads of the 
fivers which run through the counties of Hants and King's county ; 
and between cape Sable and Annapolis royal. This tribe is fuppofed 
to have about three hundred fighting men. The Marechites inhabit 
the river St. John, and around PalTamaquoddy bay, are eftimated at 
one hundred and forty fighting men ; they are much fuperior in all 
rcfpeits to the Micmacks.-— The animals are the fame as in tiie 
United States, though much lefs numerous. 


X HIS ifland lies in the gulf of St. Lawrence, nearthe northern coaft 
cf the province of Nova-Scotia, and is about fixty miles long, and thirty 
or forty broad. It has feveral fine rivers, a rich foil, and is pleafantly 
fituated. Charlotte-town is its principal town, and is the refidence of 
the lieutenant-governor, who is the chief officer on the ifland. The 
number of inhabitants are eftimated at about five thoufimd. Upon the 
feduftion of cape Breton in 1745, the inhabitants of this ifland, 
amounting to about four thoufand, fubmitted quietly to the Britifh 
arms. While the French poflefled this ifland, they improved it to fo 
much advantage, that it was called the granary of Canada, which it 
fiirnifiied with great plenty of corn, as well as beef afld pork. It is 
attached to the province of Nova-Scotio. 


( 45 ) 



EWFOUNDLAND is fituatcd to the eaft of the gulf of St. Law- 
rence, between forty-fix and fifty-two degrees of north latitude, and 
between fifty -three and fifty-nine degrees weft longitude, feparated 
from Labrador, or New-Britain, by the ftraits of Belleifle ; and from 
Canada, by the bay of St, Lawrence ; being five hundred and fifty- 
miles long and two hundred broad. The coafts are extremely fubjedl 
to fogs, attended with almoif continual ftorms of fnowand fleet, the 
iky being ufually overcaft. From the foil of this ifland the Britifli 
reap no great advantage, for the cold is long continued and fevere ; 
and the fummer heat, though violent, warms it not enough to produce 
any thing valuable; for the foil, at leaft in thofe parts of the ifland 
which have been explored, is rocky and barren ; however, it is wa- 
tered by feveral good rivers, and has many large and good harbours. 
This ifland, whenever the continent fhall come to fail of timber con- 
venient to navigation, which on the fea coaft perhaps will be at no 
very remote period, it is faid, will afford a large fupply for roafts, 
yards, and all forts of lumber for the Weft-India trade. But what 
at prcfent it is chiefly valuable for, is the great fifliery of cod carried 
on upon thofe ftioals, which are called the banks of Newfoundland. 
Great-Britain and North-America, at the loweft computation, annu- 
ally employ three thoufand fail of fmall craft in this fifliery ; on board 
of which, and on fliore to cure and pack the fifli, are upwards of pne 
hundred thoufand hands ; fo that this fifliery is not only a A'ery valu- 
able branch of trade to the merchant, but a fource of livelihood to fa 
many thoufands of poor people, and a moft excellent nurfery for 
leamen. This fiftiery is computed to increafe the national flock 
three hundred thoufand pounds a year in gold and filver, remitted for 
the cod fold in the north, in Spain, Portugal, Italy, and the Levant, 
The plenty of cod, both oi the great bank and the Iefl"er ones, which 
lie to the eafl: and fouth-eaft of this ifland, is inconceiveable ; and not 
only cod, but feveral other fpecies of fifli, are caught there in abun- 
dance ; all of which are neaily in an equal plenty along the fliores of 


46 GENERAL DESCRI^tlOl^, 6cC, 

Newfoundland, Nova-Scotia, New-England, and the ifle of cap* 
Breton ; and very profitable fiflieries are carried on upon all their 

This ifland, after various difputes about the property, was entirely- 
ceded to England by the treaty of Utrecht, in 1713 ; but the French 
were left at liberty to dry their nets on the northern (hores of the ifland ; 
and by the treaty of 1763, they were permitted to fifli in the gulf of 
St. Lawrence, but with this limitation, that they fliould not approach 
u'ithin three leagues of any of the coafts belonging to England. The 
fmall iflands of St. Pierre and Miquelon, fituated to the fouthward of 
Newfoundland, were alfo ceded to ihe French, who ftipulated to ercft 
no fortifications en thefe iflands, nor to keep more than fifty foldiers 
to enforce the police. By the laft treaty of peace, the French are to 
enjoy the fiflieries on the north and on the weft coafts of the ifland ; 
and the inhabitants of the United States are allowed the fame privi- 
leges in fifliing as before their independence. The chief towns in 
Newfoundland are, Placentia, Bonavifla, and St. John's : but not 
above one thoufand families remain here in winter. A fmall fquadron 
of men of war are fent out every fpring to proteft the fiflieries and 
inhabitants, the admiral of which, for the time being, is governor of 
the iiland, befides whom there are two lieutenant-governors, one at 
Yiacentia, and the other at St. John's. 


{ 47 ) 





'REENLAND Is a general name by which is now denoted the 
moft eafterly parts of America, ftretching towards the north-pole, an4 
Jikewife Ibme iflands northward of the continent of Europe, lying in 
■very high latitudes. The whole of this country was forn-.erly defcribed 
as belonging to Europe, but from its contiguity to, and probable 
junion with the American continent, it appears moft proper to be 
clafled among the countries belonging to the latter ; we therefore have 
followed ]^r. Morfe, apd placed it among the divifions of North- 
America.— It is divided into two parts, viz. Weft and Eaft Greenland, 
of each ive (hall here give a defcription from the beft autliorities ex^ 


A HIS country is now laid down, in our lateft maps, as part of the 

continent pf America, though on what authority is not very clear.* 

^ That 

* Whether Greenland is an idand, has not yet been decided, as no fhiphas penetrated 
higher than the fesenty-eighth degree, on account of the ice. That it is not an ifland, 
but a part of the American continent, is rendered probable ; ift. Becaul'e Davis' ftraits, 
or ra'her Baffin's bay, grows narrower and narrower towards the feventy-eighth degree 
rorth. — 2d. Becaufe the coaft, which in other places is very high towards the fea, grows 

lower and lower northward 3d. Becaufe the tide, which at cape Farewell, and as far 

up ^s Cockin's found, in the fixty-fifth degree of latitude, rifes eighteen feel a: the new 
and fuU moon, decreafes to the northward of Diflto, fo that in the fevcniicth degree of 



That part of it which the Europeans have any knowledge of i& 
bounded on the weft by Baffin's bay, on the fouth by Davis' {traits, 
znd on the eaft by the northern part of the Atlantic ocean. It is a very 
mountainous country, and fome parts of it fo high that they may be 
difcerned thirty leagues ofl'at fea. The inland mountain?, hills, and 
rocks, are covered with perpetual fnow ; but the low lands on the fea- 
fide are cloathed with verdure in the fummer feafon. The coaft 
abounds with inlets, bays, and large rivers ; and is furrounded with 
a vaft number of iflands of different dimenfiuns. In a great many 
places, hov/ever, on the eaftern coaft efpecially, the fiiore is inaccef- 
iible by rcafon of the floating mountains of ice. The principal river, 
called Baal, falls into the fea in the fixty-fourth degree of latitude, 
where the firft Danifli lodge was built in 1721 ; and has been navi- 
2;atcd above forty miles up the country. 

Well Greenland was firft peopled by Europeans in the eighth cen* 
tnrv. At that time a company of Icelanders, headed by one Ericke 
Kancle, were by accident driven on the coaft. On his return he repre- 
fented (hecoiintry in fuch a favourable light, thatfome fcynilies sgaiii 
followed him thither, where they foon became a thriving colony, 
and! beflowed on their new habitation the name of Groenlnnd, ot 
Greenland, on account of its verdant appeafafice. This colony was 
converted to Chriftianity by a mil^onary from Norway, fent thither 
by the celebrated Olaf, the lirft Norwegian monarch who embraced 
the Chriftian religion. The Greenland fettlement continued to incrcafe 
and thrive under his proteftion ; and in a little time the country was 
provided with many towns, churches, convents, bifhops, S:c. undei' 
the jurillliftion of the archbifl^op of Drpntheim. A confiderable 
commerce was carried on between Greenland and Norway ; and a re- 
gular intercourfe maintained belween the two countries till the year 
1406, when the lafl bifliop was fent over. From that time all corref- 
pondencc was cut otT, and all knowledge of Greenland has been bu- 
ried in oblivion. 

tatitmlc it rifes Httlc more than eight feet, an^ probably continues to i^iminiih, till there 
is no tide at all. — To which mw be added the relation of the Greenlanders, which how-» 
ever camiov be much depended on, viz. that the ftrait contrails itfclf fo narrow at lart, 
tlxat they can go on the ice fo near to the other fide as to be able to call to the inhabitants, 
and th.u they can ftrike a fi(h on both fiJcs at once ; but that tlwrc runs fuch a firong. 
current froui tlie noiih into the llrait, that they cannot pafs it. 

Ellis' voj^ige to liurlfi/^i toy for tkf Jifcn'try of a north'VeJi fnffkgt, 

1 Thk 


This ftrange and abrupt ccHation of trade and intercourfe has been 
attributed to various caufes ; but the mort probable is the following: 
The colony, from its tirft fettlement, had been haraffed by the na- 
tives, a barbarous and Hwagc people ; agreeing in cuftoms, garb, 
and appearance, with the Efquimaux found about Hndfon's bay. 
This nation, called Schrellings, at length prevailed agaiiill the Ice- 
land fettlers who inhabited the wellcrn diftriii;, and exterminated thern 
in the fourteenth century; infomuch, that when their brethren of the 
eaftern diftrid came to their affiilance, they found nothing alive but 
ibrae cattle and flocks of flieep running wild about the country. Per- 
haps they themfelves afterwards experienced the fame fate, and were 
totally deftroyed by thcfe Schrellings, whofe dcfLendants ftill inhabit 
the weftern parts of Greenland, and from tradition confirm this con- 
jecture. They afiirm that the houfes and villages, whofe ruins ftill ap- 
pear, were inhabited by a nation of fti-angers, whom their anccttors 
deftroyed. There are reafons, however, for believing that there may 
be ftill fome defcendants of the ancient Iceland colony remaining in 
the eaftern diftrlft, though they cannot be vilited by land, on account 
of the ftupendous mountains, perpetually covered with fnow, which 
divide the two parts of Greenland ; while they have been rendered 
inacceffible by fea, by the vafl: quantity of ice driven froin Spitzber- 
gen, or Eaft Greenland. One would imagine that there muft have 
been fome confiderable alteration in the northern parts of the world 
fince the fifteenth century, fo that the coaft of Greenland is now be- 
come almofl: totally inacceirible, though formerly vifited with very 
little difficulty. It is alio natural to afl<, by what means the people 
of the eaftern colony furmounted the above-mentioned obftaclcs when 
they went to the nfTiftance of their weftes-n friends ; how they returned 
to their own country ; and in what manner hiftorians learned the fuc- 
cefs of their expedition ? Concerning all this we have very little fatif- 
faftory information. AH that can be learned from the moft authentic 
records is, that Greenland was divided into two dillrifts, called Weft- 
Bygd and Eaft-Bygd; that the weftern divifion contained four paiilhes 
and one hundred villages : that the eaftern diftrift was ftill more 
flourilliing, as being nearer to Iceland, fooner fettled, and n-.ore fre- 
quented by fliipping from Norway. There arc alfo many accounts, 
though moft of them romantic and flightlv attelled, which render it 
probable that part of the eaftern colony ftill fubfifts, who, at ibme 
time or other, may have given the imperfect i elation above n.ciitioned. 
This colony, in ancient times, certainly comprche!-<ded twelve exten- 

VoL. IV. H five 


five pai'.fhes ; one hundred and ninety villages ; a bifliop's fee> and 
two monafteries. The prefent inhabitants of the weflern diftrift arc 
entirely ia;norant of this part, from which they are divided by rocks, 
mountains, and deferts, and ftill more efFe6tually by their apprehen- 
fion: for ihey believe the eafrera Grcenlanders to be a cruel, b.irba- 
rous nation, that deftroy and eat all flrangers who fall into their 
iiands. About a century after all intercourle between Norway and 
Greenland had ceafed, feveral fliips were fent fuccelTively by the 
kings of Den-mark in order to difcover the eaftern dillrift ; but all of 
' t'lem mifcarried. Among thefe adventui'ers, Mogens Heinfon, after 
having furmounted many difficulties and dangers, got fight of the land; 
Avhich, however, he could not approach. At his return, he pretended 
that the fliij) was arrcited in the middle of her courfe by certain rocks 
of loadftone at the bottom of the fea. The fame year, 1 576, in which 
this attempt was made, has been rendered remarkable by the voyage 
of Captain Martin Frobiflier, fent upon the fame errand by Queen 
Elizabeth. He likewife defcried the land ; but could not reach it, and 
therefore returned to England ; yet not Ijefore he had failed fixty 
icrigues in the firait, which ilill retains his name, and landed on feveral 
liiands, where he had fome communication with the natives. He had 
likewife taken pofleliicn of the country in the name of Queen Eliza- 
beth ; and brought av/ay fome pieces of heavy black (lone, from 
which the refiners of London extrafted a certain proportion of gold. 
In the enfuing fpring he undertook a fccond voyage, at the head of a 
final] fquadron, equipped at the expenfe of the public, entered the 
liraits a fecond time; difcovcred upon an ifland a gold and fi'ver mine j 
bellowed names upon diiferent bays, iflands, and head-lands ; .^nd 
brougl'it a-.vay a lading of ore, together with two natives, a male and 
a female, whom the Engliih kidnapped. 

Suck was the fuccefs of this voyage, that another armament was fit- 
ted out under the aufpices of Admiral FrobifJier, confifting of fifteea 
■fail, including a confiderable number of foldiers, miners, fmelters, 
carpenters, and bakers, to remain all the winter near the mines in a 
wooden fort, t'.ic different pieces of which they carried out in the 
tranfporfs. They met with boifterous weather, impcr.etrable fogs, 
and violent cmrents upon the coafl' of Greenland, which retarded their ■ 
operations until the feafon was far advanced. Part of their wooden 
fort was loft at fea ; and thoy had neither provifion nor fuel fufficienC 
for the winter. The admiral therefore determined to return with as 
much ore as he could procure, of this they obtained brge quantities 



out of a new mine, to which they gave the name of the Coimtefs of 
Suflex. They likewifc built ;m houle of ftonfi and lime, provideil with 
ovens; and here, with a view to conciliate theaifc6iion of the natives, 
they left a quantity of fniall morrice-bcll?, knives, beads, looking- 
glafles, leaden piiSlurcs, and other toys, together with fevcial loaves 
of bread. They buried the timber of the fort whei£ it could be eafily 
found next jxar; and lowed corn, pcaic, and other grain, by way of 
experiment, to know what the country would produce. Having taken 
thefe precautions, they failed from thence in the beginning of Sep- 
tember ; and after a month's ftormy paffagc, arrived in England : but 
this noble defign was never pn)fccuted. 

Chrifl-ian IV. king of Denmark, being delirous of difcovering the 
•old Greenland fettlcment, lent three iliips thither, under the command 
of captain Godflie Lindenow, who is faid to have reached the call 
coaft of Greenland, where he traded with the favage inhabitants, fuch 
as they are flill found in the weftern diRrift, but law no figns of a 
civilized people. Had he aftually landed in the eaftern divifion, he 
muft have perceived fome remains of the ancient colony, even in the 
.ruins of their convents and villages. Lindenow kidnapped tw'o of the 
natives, who were conveyed to Copenhagen ; and the fame cruel fraud 
was praftifed by other two fliips which failed into Davis' flraits,* 
where they difcovered divers fine harbours, and delightful meadows 

* Nothing can be more inhuman and repugnant to the didatcs of common julHcc 
than this praftire of tearing away poor creatures from their country, their families, and 
conneclions : unlcfs we fuppofe them altogether deftitute of natLjral nffeiftion ; and that 
this was not the cafe with tliofe poor Grecniandcrs, fome of whom were brought alive 
to Copenhagen, appears from the wliole tenor of their con,duil, up'.n their firft capture, 
and during their confinement in Denmaric. When firfl: captivated, they rent the air wiih 
their cries and lamentations : they even leaped ia:o the fc?. ; and, when taken on board, 
for fome time rcfufed all fjftenanre. Their eyes were continualiv turntd towards their 
dear countiy, and their faces always bathed in tears. Even the kindnefs of his 
Danifn majeily, and the carefTes of the court and people, could not alleviate their grief. 
One of them was perceived to fhcd tears always when he favv an infant in the mother's 
arms ; a circumftance from whence it was naturally concluded, ihat he had Icfr his wife 
with a young child in Greenland. Two of them went to lla in their little canoes in 
hope of reaching Greenland ; but one of them was retaken. Ctiier two made the fame 
attempt ; 1 ut were diivcn by a ftorm on the coaft of Schoncn, where th^y were appre- 
hended by the peafantF, and rcconveyed to Copenhagen- One of them afterwards died 
of a fever, caught in filhing pearl, during the winter, for the governor of Kolding. Thj 
reft lived fome years in Denmark ; but at length, feeing no profpeft of being able to re- 
▼ifir their native country, they funk into a kind of melancholy difordcr, and expired. 

H a covered 


covered v/Itli verdure. In fome places they are faid to have found a 
confiderable quantity of ore, every hundred pounds of which yielded 
twenty-fix ounces of filver. The fame Admiral Lindenow made 
another voyage to the coaft of Greenland in the year x6o6, direfting 
his courfe to the weflward of cape Farewell. He coafled along the 
flraits of Davis, and having made fbme obfervations on the face of 
the country, the harbours and iflands, returned to Denmark. Carftea 
Hichards, being detached with two fhips on the fame difcovery, de- 
fcried the high land on the eaftern fide of Greenland, but was hin- 
dered by the ice from approaching the fliore. 

Other expeditions of the fame nature have been planned and exe-t 
cuted with the fame bad fuccefs, under the aufpices of a Danifli, 
company of merchants. Two fliips returned from the weilern part 
of Greenlahd loaded with a kind of yellow fand, fuppofed to contain 
a large proportion of gold. This being affayed by the goldfmiths 
of Copenhagen, was condemned as ufelefs, and thrown overboard ; 
but froni a fmall quantify of this fand, which was referved as a cu- 
riofity, an expert chemift afterwards extracted a quantity of pure 
gold. The captain, who brought home this adventure, was fo cha- 
grined at his difappointment, that he died of grief, without having 
left any diredions concerning the place where the fand had been 
difcovered. In the year 1654, Henry Moller, a rich Dane, equip- 
ped a veffel under the command of David de Nelles, who failed to 
the wefi: coaft of Greenland, from which he carried oft" three women 
of the country. Other efforts have been made, under the en- 
couragement of the Danilh king, for the difcovery and recovery of 
the old Iceland colony in Greenland j but all of them mifcarried, 
and people began to look upon fuch expeditions as wild and chi- 
merical. At length the Greenland company at Bergen in Norway, 
tranfported a colony to the weflern coaft, a,bout the fixty-fourth de- 
gree of latitude ; and thefe Norwegians failed in the year 17/2, ac- 
companied by the Rev. Hans Egcde, to whofe care, ability and pre- 
cifion, we owe the bcft and moft authentic account of modera 
Greenland. This gentleman endeavoured to reach the eaftern dif- 
tri61, by coafting fouthwards, and advanced as far as the States Pro- 
montory ; but the feafon of the year, and continual ftorms, obliged 
him to return ; and, as he could not even find the ftrait of Fr«biflier, 
he concluded, that no fuch place ever exifted. I,n the year 1724, a 
fliip, being equipped by the companj', failed on this difcovery, with 
a view to land on the caft fide oppofite to Iceland j but the vaft 



llioals of ice, which barricadoed that part of the coafl. rendere4 
this fcheme impradicable. His Danidi majefty, in the year 1728, 
caufed horfes to be tranfported to Greenland, in hope that the fet- 
tlers might by their means travel over land to the eaftern diftrift ; 
but the icy mountains were found impallable. Finally, Lieutenant 
Richards, in a fliip which had wintered near the nevv Daiiifh colony, 
attempted, in his return to Denmark, to land on the caftern fliore j 
but all his endeavours proved abortive, 

Mr. Egede is of opinion, that the only prafticable method of 
reaching that part of the country, , wiU be to coart north-about in 
fmall veflels, between the great Hakes of ice and the fliore ; as the 
Greenlanders have declared, that the currents continually rufliino' 
from the bays and inlets, and running fouth-weflwards alonufthe 
fliore, hinder the ice from adhering to the land ; fo that there is 
always a channel open, through which velTels of fmall burden might 
pafs, efpecially if lodges were built at convenient diftances on the 
fliore, for the convenience and diretftion of the adventurers. 

That part of the country which is now vifited and fettled by the 
Danes and Norwegians, lies between the fixty-fourth and fixty^ 
eighth degrees of north latitude ; and thus far it is faid the climate 
is temperate. In the fummer, which continues from the end of 
May to the middle of Septerriber, the weather is warm and com-^ 
fortable, while the wind blows eafterly ; though even at this time 
ftorms frequently happen, which rage with incredible violence ; and 
the fea coafts are infefted with fogs that are equally difagreeable and 
unhealthy. Near the fliore, and in the bays and inlets, the low land 
is clothed with the moft charming verdure ; but the inJand moun-, 
tains are perpetually covered with ice and fnow. To the northward 
of the fixty-eighth degree of latitude the cold is prodigioufly intenfe; 
and towards the end of Augufl: all the coaft is covered with ice, 
which never thaws till April or May, and fometimes not till the latter 
end of June. Nothing can exhibit a more dreadful, and at the fame 
time a more dazzling, appearance, than thofj prodigious mafles of" 
ice that furronnd the whole coaft in various forms, reflcding a mul- 
titude of colours from the fun-beams, and calling to mind the en- 
chanted fcenes of romance. Such profpe«5ls they yield in calm wea- 
.ther ; but when the wind begins to blow, and the waves to rile in 
vaft billows, the violent fliocks of thofe pieces of ice dafliing asi-ainfl; 
one another, fill the mind with hoiTor. Greenland is fcldom vifited 
with thunder and lightning, but the aurora boreal is is very frequent 



and bright. At the lime of new and full moon, the tide rifes and 
falls upon this coaft about three fathoms ; and it is remaj-kable, that 
the fprings and fountains on fliore rife and fall with the flux and re- 
flux of the ocean. 

The foil of Greenland varies like that of all other mountainous 
countries : the hills are very barren, being indeed frozen throughout 
■ the whole year ; but the valleys and low grounds, efpecially near 
the fea, are rich and fruitful. The ancient Norwegian chronicles 
inform us, that Greenland formerly produced a gre;'.t. number of 
cattle ; and that coniiderable quantities of butier and cheefe were 
■exported to Norway ; and, on account of their peculiar excellency, 
fet apart for the king's ufe. The fame hiftories informs u?, that 
fome parts of the country yielded excellent wheat ; and that large 
oaks were found here, which carried acorns as big as apples. Some 
of thele oaks ftill remain in the fbuthern parts, a;id in m.any places 
the marks of ploughed land are eafily perceived : at prefent, how- 
ever, the country is defritute of corn and cattle, though in many 
places it produces excellent pafturc, and, if properly cultivated, 
would probably yield grain alfo. Mr. Egede fowed fome barley in 
n bay adjoining to the Danifli colony ; it fprang up fo fatl, that by 
the latter end of July it was in the full ear ; but being nipped by a 
night froft it never arrived at maturity. This feed was brought 
from Bergen, where the fummer is of greater heat and duration 
than in Greenland ; but in all probability the corn which grows in 
the northern parts of Norway vv'ould alfo thrive here. Turnips and 
coleworts of an excellent tafle and flavour are alio produced here. 
The fides of the mountains near the bays are clothed with wild 
thyme, which dift'uies its fragrance to a great diftance. The herb 
tormentil is very common in this country, and likewiie many others 
not defcribed by the botanifl:s. Among the fruits of Greenland we 
- number juniper-berries, blue-berries, bil-berries and bramble- 

Greenland is thought to contain many mines of metal, though 
none of them are wrought. To the fouthward of the Danifli colony 
are fome appearances of a mine of copper. Mr. Egede once re- 
ceived a hnnp of ore from one of the natives, and here he found 
calamine of a yellovv colour. Ke once fent a confiderable quantity 
of find of a vellovv colour, intermixed with ibeaks of vermilion, 
to the Bergen company : they probably found their account in this 
prefent; for they deflred him, by a ktter, to procure as much of 


t!iat fand as poHible ; but he was never able to find the place where 
he faw the firft fpecimen. It was one of the finalleft among a great 
niimber of illands, and the mark he had fet up was blown down by 
a violent ilorm : poiribly this might be the lame mireral of which 
Captain Frobidier brought fo much to Enghuid. This corntiy pro- 
duces rock-cryflals both red and white, and whole mountains of the 
afbeltos or incombuftible flax. Around the coiony, whicii is known 
by the name of Good Hope, they find a kind of baflard marble of 
various colours, which the natives form into bowls, lamps, pots, 8:c. 
All that has bi-cn flud of the fertility of Greenland, however, mufl be 
imderliood only of that part v.liich lies between the fi^itieth and 
fixty-fifth degrees of latitude : the moft northern parts are totally 
dellitute of herbs and plants. The wietched inhabitants cannot find 
grafs in fuiticient quantities to fluff into thtnr flioes to k^ep their feet 
xvarm, but are obliged to buy it from thofe who inhabit the more 
fouthern parts. 

The animals which abound moft in Greenland are, rein-deer, 
foxes, hares, dogs and white bears. The hares are of a white co- 
Jour and very fat ; the foxes are of different colours, white, greyifli 
and blueifli, and fmaller than thofe of Denmark and Norway. The 
natives keep a great number of dogs, which are large, white or 
fpeckled, and rough, with ears fianding upright, as is the cafe with 
all the dogs peculiar to cold climates ; they are timorous and fl:upid, 
and neither bay nor bark, but fometimes howl difmally. In the 
northern parts the natives yoke them in fledges, which, though 
heavy laden, they will draw on the ice at the rate of feventy miles 
in a fliort winter's day. Thefe poor animals are very ill rewarded 
for their fervice, being left to provide for th.emfelves, except when 
their mafters happen to catch a great number of leals : on thefe oc- 
cafi:ins the dogs are regaled with the l/Iood and entrails ; at other 
times they fublift, l,ike wild beafts, upon miifcles and berries. Here 
alio are found gre^t numbers of ravens, eagles of a prcdigious fizc, 
falcons, and other birds of prey ; and likewife a kind of linnet, 
which warbles very melodioufly. Whales, fword-fifli, porpoifes, 
&c. abound on the coafts ; alfo holybut, turbot, cod, haddock, he. 
The more dubious animals alfo, cal'ed mermaids, fea-ferpcnts and 
krakens, faid to be found on the coafl of Norway, are faid likewifo 
to dwell in thefe feas. hlr. Egede alTures us, that in the year 173+ 
the fea-ferpent was feen o2' the new Danifh colony, ar.d raifed its 
head mafl-high above the furface of the water. . 



The people who now inhabit the weftern coaft of Greenlancf> 
and who, without doubt^ are the defcendants of the ancient Schrel- 
lings, who exterminated the firft Iceland colony, bear a near re- 
femblahce to the Samoiedes and Laplanders in their perfons, com-' 
plexions, and way of life : they arc fliort, brawny, and inclined to 
corpulency, with broad faces, fiat nofeS) thick lips, black hair and 
eyes, and a yellowifli tawny complexion : they are for the moft part 
vigorous and healthy, but remarkably fltort-lived, few of them 
reaching the grand climafteric, and many dying in their infancy 
and in the prime of youth : they are fubjeft to a weaknefs in the 
eyes, occafioned by the piercing winds and the glare of the fnow in 
the winter-time : the leprefy ib known among them, but is not con- 
tagious. Thofe that dwell in the northern parts are miferably tor- 
mented with dylenteiies, rheums, and pulmonary diforders, boils 
and epilepfy. The fmall-pox being imported among them from 
Copenhagen in the year 1734, made terrible havoc among thefe 
poor people, who are utterly deftitute of any knowledge of the 
the medicinal art, and depend entirely for affiftance upon their an- 
gekuts or conjurers. In their difpofitions the Greenlanders are cold, 
phlegmatic, indolent and flow of apprehenlion, but very cjuier, or- 
derly and good-natured : they live peaceably together, and have 
every thing in common, without ftrife. envying or animofity : they 
are civil and hofpitable, but flovenly to a degree almoil: beyond the 
Hottentots themfelves ; they never wafli themlelves with water, but 
lick their paws like the cat, and then rub their faces with them. 
They eat after their dogs without wafliing their didies ; devour the 
iice which devour them ; and even lick the fweat which they fcrape 
otF from their faces with their knives. The women wafli themfelves 
with their own urine, which they imagine makes their hair grow, 
and in the winter-time go out immediately after, to let the liquor 
freeze upon their fKin. They will often eat their viftuals oft" the 
dirty ground, without any veifel to hold it in, and devour rotten 
flefli with the gientell avidity. In times of fcarcity they will fubfifl 
on pieces of old Ikin, reeds, fea-weed, and a root called tugloro- 
net, dreficd w:th train oil and fat. The dung of rein-deer taken 
from the intcllines, the entrails of partridges, and all forts of offals, 
are counted dainties among thefe favages ; and of the fcrapings of 
feals fkins they make ilellcate pancakes. At firft they could not 
tafte the Danifli provifions without abhorrence, but now they are 
become} fend of bread and butter, though they ftill re- 
2. taia 


tain an averficn to tobacco and fpirituous liquors ; in which par- 
ticular they difter from almofl all favages on the face of the earth. 

The Greenlanders commonly content themfelves with one wife, 
who is condemned, as among other favage nations, to do all the 
drudgery, and rmay be corre6):ed, or even divorced, by the hufband 
at plcafiiie. Heroes, however, and extraordinary perfonages, are 
indulged with a plurality of wives. Their young women are generally 
chafte and bafliful ; but at fomc of their feafts, in the midil of their 
jollity, a man retires with his neighbour's wife behind a curtain made 
of Ikins ; and all the'guefts, thus coupled, retire in their turns. 
The women think theaifelves happy if an angekut or prophet will 
thus honour them witli his carefles. Thefe people never marry 
within the prohibited degrees of confanguinity, nor is it counted 
decent in a couple to marry who have been educated in the fame fa- 
mily. They have a number of ridiculous and fuperftitious cuftoms; 
among which the two follovi'ing are the moft remarkable : — While 
a woman is in labour, the goffips hold a chamber-pot over her head, 
as a charm to haften the delivery. When the child is a year old, the 
mother licks and flabbers it all over, to render it, as Ihe imagines, 
more ftrong and hardy. 

All the Greenlanders hitherto known, fpeak the fame language, 
though different dialefts prevail in different parts of the country : 
it abounds with double confonants, and is fo guttural, that the pro- 
nunciation of many words is not to be learned except by thofe who 
have been accuftomed to it from their infancy. The letters C, D-, 
F, Q_and X, are not known in their alphabet. Like the North- 
Americans, and inhabitants of Kamfchatka, they have a great num- 
ber of long polyfyllables. Their words, nouns as well as verbs, 
are infieded at the end by varying the terminations without the help 
ef articles ; but their language being found defedive, they have 
adopted a good many words from the Norwegian dialed. Not- 
withftanding the endeavours of the Danifti miffionaries, they have 
no great reafon to boall: of the profclytes they have made of the na- 
tives of Greenland. Thefe favages pay great deference and refped 
to the Danes, whom indeed they obey as their mafters, and hear the 
truths of the Chriftian religion expounded without doubting the 
veracity of their teachers ; but at the fame time they lirtcn v/itii the 
moft mortifying indifference, without being in the leaft influenced 
by what they have heard. They believe in the immortality of the 
foul, and the exiilence of a fpirit whom they call Torngarfuk, but 
Vol. IV. I of 



of whom they have formed the inofl ridiculous notions.* The 
Angekuts, who are fuppofed to be his immediate minifters, differ 


'•* The firft miffionaries among the GrcetilanJcrs entertained a doubt whether they 
^ad^any conception of a Divine Being, as they had no word in their language by 
which to defignatc him. When they were alked who made the hca%'cn and earth, and 
all vifiblc things ? their anfwcr was — " We know not ; or, we do not know him ; 
or, it muft have been fomc mighty pcrfon ; or, tilings always have been ns they are, 
and will always remain fo." But when they underftood their language better, they 
found they had fome vague notions concerning the foul and fpirits, and were felicitous 
about the ftate after death. It was evident alfo that they had fome faint conceptions of 
a Divine Being. 

They believe in the doifliinc of the tranfmigration of fouls — that the foul is a fpi- 
ritual eirencc quite different from the body — that it needs no corporeal nourilhmcnt — 
that it furvives the body, and lives in a future better ftate, which they believe will 
never end. But they have very different ideas of this ftate. Many place their Elyfium 
in the abyflcs of the ocean, or the bowels of the earth, and think the deep cavities of 
the rocks are avenues leading to it. There dwells Torngarfuck and his mother ; 
there a joyous fummer is perpetual, and a (hining fun isobfcuredby no night ; there 
is the limpid ftreara, and abundance of fowls, fifhes, rcin-dccr, and their beloved 
feals, and thefe are all to be caught without toil, nay, they arc even found in a great 
kettle boiling alive. But to thefe delightful fe.ats none muft approach but thofe who 
have been dextrous and diligent .at their work, (for this is their grand idea of virtue) 
that have performed great exploits, and have maftered many whales and fcals, have 
undergone great hardlhips, have been drowned in the fea, or died in childbed. The 
difembodied fpirit does not enter dancing into the Elyfian fields, but muft fpend five 
whole days, fome fay longer, in Hiding down a rugged rock, which is theieby fmeared 
•with blood and gore. Thofe unfortunate fouls which arc obliged to perform this rough 
journey in the cold winter, or in boifterous weather, are peculiar objefts of their pity, 
becaufc they may be eafily dcftroyed on the road, which deftruftion they call the fe- 
cond death, and defcribe it as a perfedt extin£lion, and tliis, to them, is the moft dread- 
ful confideration. Therefore during thefe five days or more, the furviving relations 
muft .abftain from certain meats, and from all noify work, except the neceilary fiih- 
ing, that the foul may not be difturbed or periih in its perilous paffage. From all 
which, it is plain, that the Greenlandcrs, fhipid as they have been rcprefented, have a* 
idea that the good will be rewarded, .and the bad punilhed, and that they conceive a 
horror at the thought of the entire annihilation of the foul. 

Others have their p.aradife among the celeftial bodies, and they imagine their flight 
thither fo eafy and rapid, that the foul refts the very fame evening in the manfion of the 
jnoon, who was a Grcenlandcr, and there it can dance and play at ball with the reft 
of the fouls ; for they think the northern lights to be the dance of fportive fouls. The 
fouls in tliis paradifc arc placed in tents round a vaft lake abounding with filh and fowl. 
When this lake overflows it rains on the cartl^ butWhould the dam once break, there 
wi'uld be a general deli4ge. 



concerning the principles of his exiflence ; feme affirming that he i? 
without form or fliape ; others, that he has the iliape of a bear ; 
others, that he has a large human body with only one arm ; while 
others affirm, that he is no larger than a man's finger, with many 
other abfurdities of a fimilar kind. They have alfo a peculiar kind 
of mythology, by which they believe all the elements to be full (if 
fpiiits, from among which every one of their prophets is fupplicd 
with a familiar which they name Torngack, and who is always 
ready when fummoned to his affiftance. 

The Greenlanders are employed all the year round either in fifhing 
or hunting. At fea they purfue the whales, morfes, feals, fifli for 
eating, and fea fowl. On fhore they hunt the rein-deer in difte-cnt 
parts of the country : they drive thefe animals, which feed in large 
herds, into a narrow circle or defile, where they arc eafily flain 
with arrows. Their bow is made of fir-tree, wound about with the 
twifted finevvs of animals ; the firing is compofed of the fame llufF, 
or of feal ikin ; the arrow is a good fathom in length, pointed with 
a bearded iron, or a fliarp bone j but thofe with which they kill 
birds are blunt, that they may not tear the flefli. Sea fowls they kill 
with lances, which they throw to a great diftance with furprifing 
dexterity. Their manner of catching whales is quite different from 
that praftifed by the Europeans : about fifty perfons, men and wo- 
men, fet out in one long boat, which is called a lione hoat^ from koue 
a " woman," becaufe it is rowed by females only. When they find 
a whale, they flrike him with harpoons, to which are faftened with 
long lines fome feal fkins blown up like bladders. Thefe, by float- 
ing on the furface, not only difcover the back of the whale, but 
hinder him from diving under water for any length of time. They 
continue to purfue him until he lofes flrength, when they pierce 
Jiim with fpears and lances till he expires. On this occafion they 
are clad in their fpring coats, confifting of one piece, with gloves, 
boots, and caps made of feal Ikin fo clofely laced and fewed that they 

The v.'ifei" Greenlanders, who conf.der the foul as a fpiritual ininiatcrial clTcncc, 
bugh at all this, and fay, if there Jhould be fuch a material, luxuriant paradifc, 
■where fouls could entertain themfelves with hunting, ftill it can only endure for 
a time ; af'.erwards the fouls will certainly be conveyed to the peaceful manfions : 
but they know not what their food or cmploymenr will be. On the other hand, they 
place their hell in the fubterrancous regions, which are devoid of light and heat, an4 
filled with perpetual terror and anxiety. This laft fort of people lead a regular life, 
dfs^ rtfiain from every thiPg they think is evil. 

1 % keep 


keep out water. Thus accoutred they leap into the fea, and begia 
to nice off the fat, even under water, before the whale is dead.— 
They have many different ways of killing feals j namely, by ftriking 
them with a fmall harpoon equipped alfo with an air bag ; by watch- 
ing them when they come to breathe at the air-holes in the ice, and 
ftriking them with fpears ; by approaching them in the difguife of 
their own fpecies, that is, covered with a feal fkin, creeping upon 
the ice, and moving the head from fide to fide as the feals are ac- 
cuftomed to do. By this ftratagem the Greenlandler moves toward? 
the unfufpei^ing feal, and kills him with a fpear. The Green- 
landers angle with lines made of whalebone cut very fmall, by 
means of which they fucceed wonderfully. The .Greenland canoe, 
like that ufed ia Nova-Zembla and Hudfon's bay, is about three 
fathoms in length, pointed at both ends, and three quarters of a 
yard in breadth ; it is compofed of thin rafts faftened together with 
the finews of animals. It is covered with drelfed feal-fl-iins both be- 
low and above, in fuch a manner that only a circular hole is left ia 
the middle, iarge enough to admit the body of one man. Into this 
the Greenlander thrufls himfelf up to the uaift, and fallens the fkiu 
fo tight about him that no water can enter. Thus fe' ured, and 
armed with a paddle broad at both ends, he will venture out to fea 
in the mofl ftormy weather to catch feals and fea-fovvl ; and if he 
is overfet, he can eafily raife himfelf by means of his paddle. A 
Greenlander in one of thefe canoes, which was brought with him 
to Copenhagen, outftripped a pinnace of iixteen oars, manned with 
choice mariners. The kone boat is made of the fame materials, but 
more durable, and fo large that it will contain fifty perfons with all 
their tackle, baggage and provifions : flie is fitted with a mafl, which 
carries a triangular fail made of the membranes and entrails of ieals, 
and is managed without the help of braces and bowlings : thefe 
kones are flat-bottomed, and fometimes fixty feet in length. The 
men think it beneath them to take charge of them, and therefore 
they are left to the conduft of the women, who indeed are obliged 
to do all the drudgery, including even the building and repairing 
their houfes, while the men employ themfelves wholly in preparing 
their hunting implements and fifliing tackle. 

This country is but thinly inhabited.* In the winter time the 


w Moft cf the Grecnlandcis live to the fouthward of the fixty-fccond degree of 
north latituJc; or as the u)habitants are wont to fay, ia tlie fouth ; but no Europeans 



people dwell in huts built of flone or turf j on the one fide are -the 
windows, covered with the fkins of feals or rein-deer. Several fa- 
milies live in one of thefe houfes, poU'effing each a feparate apart- 
ment, before which is a hearth with a great lamp placed on a trevit, 
over which hangs their kettle ; above is a rack or flielf on which 
their wet clothes are dried. They burn train oil in their lamps, 
and for a wick they ufe a kind of mofs, which fully anfwers 
the purpofe. Thefe lamps are not only fufficient to boil their vidluals, 
but likewife produce fuch a heat, that the whole houfe is like a 
bagnio. The door is very low, that as little cold air as poffible may 
be admitted. The houfe within is hned with old (kins, and fur- 
rounded with benches for the conveniency of ftrangers. In the 
fummer time they dwell in tents made of long poles fixed in a coni- 
cal form, covered in the infide with deers fkins, and on the outfidc 
with feals Ikins, drefled fo that the rain cannot pierce them. 


Eaft-Greenland was for a long time conlidered as a part of the 
continent of Weft-Greenland, but is now difcovered to be an af- 
femblage of iflands lying between 76° 46' and So'^ 30' of north lati- 
tude, and between 9° and 20° '<^" eafl: longitude. It was difcovered 
by Sir Hugh Willoughby in the year 1553, who called it Groen- 
land, fuppofing it to be a part of the weftern continent. In 1595, it 
was again vifited by William BarLntz and John Cornelius, two 
Dutchmen, who pretended to be the original difcoverers, and called 
the country SpitzDergen, or Sharp Mountains, from the many (harp- 
live there, fo that thefe parts are but little known. The European colonies have fixe^ 
themfelves to the northward of the fixty-fecond degree of latitude. 

A fridlor, v.ho lived many years in the coimtrj', and whofe accuracy, as far as the 
fuhjeft will admit, may be depended on, found, in the compafs of forty leagues, which 
vas the circle of his dealings, nine hundred and fifty-fcven conftant rcfidents, be- 
fides occafional vifuors. This part of Greenland is the mofl populous, except Difko 
bay, which is the beft place for trade, and the fouthcrn parts. In other places, an 
individual may travel fixty miles and not meet with a fingle psrfon. Suppofc, however, 
that the country is inhabited for the fpace of four hundred leagues, and that there are 
one thoufand fouls for every forty leagues, the amount would be ten thoufand. The 
above-mentioned faftor thinks, that there arc not more than feven thoufand, bccaufe 
ihere are fo many defert places. He aflcrts, indeed, that the native Greenlanders, ia 
1730, amounted to thirty thoufand; and when he made his firft calculation in 1 746, 
there were ftill twenty thoufand : confeqtiently, fince that time, their number has 
iiiminilhed at leaft onc-h.-\lf. 

4 pointed 


pointed and rocky motintains with which it abounds. They al- 
ledged, that the coall difcovercd by Sir Hugh VVilloughby was fome 
other country ; which accordingly the Hollanders delineated on 
their maps and charts by the name of Willoughby Land ; whereas 
in fa£t no fuch land ever exifted ; and long before the voyage of 
thefe Dutchmen, Stephen Barrows, an Englifli fliipmafter, had 
coafted along a defolate country from north latitude 78° to 80° 11', 
which was undoubtedly Spitzbergen. The fea in the neighbour- 
hood of the iflands of Spitzbergen abounds very much with whales, 
and is the common refort of the whale-fifliing {hips from different 
countries, and the country itfelf is frequently viHted by thefe fliips ; 
but till the late voyage of the Hon. Capt. Phipps, by order of his 
Majeify, the fituation of it was erroneoufly laid down. It was ima- 
gined, that the land flretched to the northward as far as 82° of north 
latitude ; but Capt. Phipps found the mofl northerly point of land, 
called Seven Iflands, not to exceed 80° 30' of latitude. Towards 
the eafi: he faw other lands lying at a dillance, fo that Spitzbergen 
plainly appeared to be furrounded by water on that fide, and not 
joined to the continent of Afia, as former navigators had fuppofed. 
The north and weft coalls alfo he explored, but was prevented by 
the ice from failing fo far to the northward as he wiflied. The 
coaft appeared neither habitable nor accelTible : it is formed of high, 
barren, black rocks, without the leaft marks of vegetation ; in 
many places bare and pointed, in others covered with fnow, ap- 
pearing even above the clouds. The valleys between the high 
chfFs were filled with fnow and ice. " This profpe£t," fiys Capt. 
Phipps, ** would have fuggefted the idea of perpetual winter, had 
not the mildnefs of the weather, the fmcoth water, bright fun- 
fliinc, and conftant day-light, given a checrfulnefs and novelty to the 
whole of this romantic fcene." The current ran along this coaft 
half a knot an hour, north. The height of one mountain feen here 
was found, by geometrical menfuration, to be at one time one thou- 
fand five hundred and three feet and a half, at another one thouland 
five hundred and three feet and eight-tenths. By a barometer con- 
ftrufted after De Luc's method, the height was found to be one 
thoufand five hundred and eighty-eight feet and a half. On this 
occafion Capt. Phipps has the following remarks : '* I cannot account 
for the great difference between the geometrical meafure and the ba- 
rometrical according to M. De Luc's calculation, which amounts to 
eighty-four feet feven inches. 1 hav< no reaion to doubt the accu- 


racy of Dr. Irving's obfervations, which were made with gi'eat care» 
As to the geometrical meafure, the agreement of fo many triangles, 
each of which muft have difcovered even the fmalleft error, is tlie 
moft fatisfaftory proof of its correiStnefs. Since my return, I have 
tried both the theodolite and barometer, to diicover whether there 
was any fault in either, and find them, upon trial, as I liad always 
done before, very accurate." 

There is good anchorage in Schmcerenburgh harbour, lying in 
north latitude 74° 44.', eaft longitude 9° 50' 45", in thirteen fathoni, 
fandy bottom, not far from the fliore, and well flielteied from all 
winds. Ciufe to this harbour is an ifland ealled Amfterdam Ifland, 
where the Dutch uled formerly to boil their whale oil ; and the re- 
mains of fome convcniency erefted by them for that purpofe are ftill 
vilible. Tiie Dutch fiiips liill refort to this place for the latter fea- 
fon of the whale fifhery. — The ftone about this place is chiefly a. 
kind of marble, which difTolves eafily in the marine acid. There 
were no appearance of minerals of any kind, nor any ligns of aiv 
cient or modern volcanoes. No infe6ls, nor any fpecies of reptiles, 
were feen, not even the common earth worm. There were no 
fprings or rivers, but great plenty of water was produced from the 
fnow which melted on the mountains. 

The mofl remarkable views which thefe dreary regions prefent 
are thofe called Icebergs. They are large bodies of ice filling the 
valleys between the high mountains : their face towards the fca is 
nearly perpendicular, and of a very lively light green colour. One 
was about three hundred feet high, with a cafcade of water ifTuing 
from it. The black mountains on each fide, the white fnow, and 
greenifh coloured ice, compofed a very beautiful and romantic 
p:(5lure. Large pieces frequently broke oiF from the icebergs, and 
fell with great noife into the water : one piece was obfervcd to have 
floated out into the bay, and grounded in twenty-four fathoms ; it 
was fifty feet high above the furface of the water, and of the fame 
beautiful colour with the iceberg fiom which it had feparated. 

Thefe iflands are totally uninhabited, though it doth not appear 
but that human creatures could fubfift on them, notwithftanding 
their vicinity to the pole. Eight Englifli failors, who were acci- 
dentally iel't here by a v.'hale-fifiiing fliip, furvived the winter, and 
were brought home next leafon. The Dutch then attempted to 
fettle a colony on Amikrdam ifland above mentioned, but all the 
people periftied, not thiough the feverity of the climate, but of the 

feu ivy, 


fcurvy, owing to the want of thofe remedies which are now happily 
difcovered, and which are found to be fo effedtual in preventing and 
curing that dreadful difeafe. The late account alfo of fix Ruffian 
failors, who ftaid four years in this inhofpitable country, affords a 
decifive proof, that a colony might be fettled on Eaft-Greenland, 
provided the doing fo could anfwer any good purpofe. 

A Greenland company was formed in London in the year 1693. A 
Joint flock of forty thoufand pounds was by llatute to be raifed by 
fubfcribers, who were incorporated for fourteen years from the firft 
day of Odober in that year ; and the company to ufe the trade of 
catching whales, &:c. to and from Greenland, and the Greenland 
feas ; they may make bye-laws for the government of the perfons 
employed in their fliips, &c. Stat. 4 & 5 W. III. cap. 17. This 
company was farther encouraged by parliament in 16965 but partly 
by unfkilful management, and partly by real lofTes, it was under a 
neceffiry of entirely breaking up, before the expiration of the term 
affigned to it, ending in 1707. But any perfon who will adventure 
to Greenland for whale-fiftiing, has all privileges granted to 
the Greenland company, by i Anne, cap. 16. and thus the trade 
was again laid open. Any fubjefts may import whale fins, oil, &c. 
of fifli caught in the Greenland feas, without paying any cuftoms, 
&c. Stat. 10 Geo. I. cap. 16. And fliips employed in the Greenland 
fifhery are to be of fuch burden, provided with boats, fo many men, 
iifhing lines, harping irons, &c. and be licenfed to proceed ; and on 
their return are paid twenty fliillings per ton bounty, for whale 
fins, &c. imported ; 6 Geo. II. cap. 33, The bounty was afterwards 
increafed, but has been lately diminifhed, and fince this diminution 
the trade has increafed. 


( 65 ) 









f AST and Weft-Florida are fituated between 25"^ and 31° north 
latitude, and 5° and 17° weft-longitude fronn Philadelphia ; the length 
is about fix hundred miles, and the breadth about one hundred and 
thirty. They are bounded north, by Georgia ; eaft, by the 
Atlantic ocean; fouth, by the gulph of JMexico ; weft, by the 
Miffiffippi ; lying in the form of an L. The climate varies veiy 
little from that of Georgia. Florida was firft difcovered in 1497, by 
Sebaftian Cabot, a Venetian, then in the Englifli fervice ; whence 
a right to the country' was claimed by the kings of England ; and this 
territory, as well as Georgia, was included in the charter granted 
by Charles II. to Carolina. In 1512, however, Florida was more 
fully difcovered by Ponce de Leon, an able Spanidi navigator, but 
who undertook his voyage from the moll abfurd motives that cau 
Vol. IV. K wcJI 


well be imagined. The Indians of the Caribbee iflands had among 
them a tradition, that feme where on the continent there was a foun- 
tain, vvhofe waters had the property of reftoring youth to all old men 
who tafled them. The romantic iuiai^Iii.iuons of the Spaniards were 
delig'ucd with the idea. Many embarked in voyages to find cut this 
imaginary fountain, who were never afterwards her.rJ of. Their fu- 
perftitious countrymen never imagined that thefs people had perifhed. 
They concluded that they did not return, only becaufe they had 
drank of the immortalizing liquor, and had difcovered a fpot lb de- 
lightful, that they did not choofe to leave it. Ponce de Leon fet out 
with this extravagant view^ as well as others, fully perfuaded of 
the exiftence of a third world, the conquefl: of which was to immor- 
talize his name. In the attempt to difcover this country, he re- 
difcovered Florida, but returned vifibly more advanced in year? 
than when he fet out on his voyage. For forne tiuie this country 
was neglected by the Spaniards, and fome Frenchmen fettled 
in it. But the new colony being neglefted by the miniftry, and 
Philip II. of Spain having accuftomed himfelf to think that he was 
the fulc proprietor of America, fitted out a fleet at Cadiz to deilroy 
them. His orders were executed with barbarity ; the French en- 
trenchments were forced, and m oft of the people killed. The prifo- 
ners were hanged on trees, v,-ith this infcription, " Not as French- 
*' men, but as heretics." 

The cruelty was foon after revenged by Dominic de Gourgue?, a 
fkilful and intrepid feaman of Gafcony, an enemy to the Spaniards, 
and pafiionately fond of hazardous expeditions and glory. He fold 
his eltates, built fome fliips, and with a feleJl: band of adventurers 
like himfelf, embarked for Florida. He drove the Spaniards from all 
fheir polls with incredible valour and a(ftivity, defeated them in every 
rencounter, and by way of retaliation, hung the prifoners on trees, 
with this infcription, " Not as Spaniards, but as affaffins." This 
expedition was attended with no other conl'cquences j Gourgues blev/ 
up the forts he had taken, and returned home, where no notice was 
taken of him. It was again conquered in 1539, by the Spaniards under 
Ferdir.and dc Soto, not without a great deal of blooddied, as the na- 
tives were very warlike, and made a vigorou* refiftance. The iet- 
tlcment, however, was not fully eftabliihed till the year 1661;, when 
the town of St. Auguftine, the capital of the colony while it remained 
in the hands of the Spaniards, was founded. In 1586, this place was 
tfaktn and pillaged by Sii* Francis Drake. It mot with the lame fate 



in 1665, being taken and plundered by Captain Davis, and a body of 
buccaneers. In 1702, an attempt was naade upon it by Colonel 
More, crovernor of Carolina. He fet out with five hundred Englifli 
and feven hundred Indians ; and having reached St. Augultine, he 
befieged it for three months, at the expiration of which, the Spani- 
ards having fent fome fliips to the relief of the place, he was obliged 
to retire. In 1740, another attempt vvns made by General Ogle- 
thorpe ; but he being outwitted by the Spanifh governor, was forced 
to raife the liege with lofs, and Florida continued in the hands of th© 
Spaniards till the year 1763, when it was ceded by treaty to Great- 
Britain. During the lall: war it was again reduced by his Catholic 
Majefly, and was guaranteed to the crown of Spain at the peace. 

Among the rivers that flow through this territory, and fall into the 
Atlantic fea, St. John's and Indian rivers are the principal. St. John's 
river rifes in or near a large fwamp, in the hearr of Eafl-l'lorida, and 
purfues a northern courfe in a broad navigable ftream, which, in fe- 
veral places, fpreads into broad bays or lakes. Lake George, which is 
only a dilatation of the river, is a beautiful piece of water, generally 
about fifteen miles broad, and from fifteen to twenty feet deep. It is or- 
namented with feveral charming ifiands, one of which is an orange 
grove, interfperfed with magnolias and palm trees. Near Long lake, 
which is two miles long and four wide, and which communicates with 
St. John's river by a fmall creek,'Js a vafl fountain of warm, or rather 
hot mineral water, ifTuing from a high bank on the river : it boils up 
with great force, forming immediately a vail: circular bafon, capacious 
enough for feveral fliallops to ride in, and runs with rapidity into the 
river, at three orfourhundredyards diftance: the water is perfedly clear, 
and the prodigious number and variety of fifli in it, while fwimming 
many feet deep, appear as plainly as though lying on the table before 
your eyes: the water hasadifagreeabletafte, and iinel'isiikc bilge water. 
This river enters into the Atlantic, north of St. Augultine. — Indian 
river rifes a fliort diftance from the fea coaft, and runs from north to 
fouth, forming a kind of inland paficige for many milts along the 
coaft. — Scguana, Apalachicola, Chatahatchi, Efcambia, Mobile, Pal- 
c^goula, and Pearl rivers, all rife in Georgia, and run foutheriy into 
the gulph of Mexico. 

There are, in this territory, a great variety of foils. The eallern 
part of it, near and about St. Auguftine, is far the moH unfruitful ; 
yet even here two crops 0/ Indian corn are produced. The banks of 
the rivers which wuter the Floridas, and tlie parts contiguo^^, are of 

JC » a fa. 


a fuperior quality, and well adapted to the culture of rice and corn, , 
while the more interior country, which is high and pleafant, abounds 
with wood of almoft every kind ; particularly white and red oakj 
live oak, laurel magnolia, pine, hiccory, cyprefs, red and white cedar. 
The live oaks, though not tall, contain a prodigious quantity of 
timber : the trunk is generally from twelve to twenty feet in circum- 
ference, and rifes ten or twelve feet from the earth, and then branches 
into four or five great limbs, which grow in nearly a horizontal di- 
rection, forming a gentle curve. " I have ftepped," fays Bartram^^ 
*' above fifty paces, on a ftraiglit line, from the trunk of one of thefe 
" trees to the extremity of the limbs." They are ever green, and 
the wood almoft incorruptible. They bear a great quantity of fmall 
acorns, which are agreeable food, when roalled, and from which the 
Indians extra£l a fweet oil, which they ufe in cooking homminy and 

The laurel magnolia is the moft beautiful among the trees of the 
foreft, and is ufually one hundred feet high, though fome are much 
kigher. The trunk is perfeflly ereft, rifing in the form of a beau- 
tiful column, and fupporting a head like an obtufe cone. The 
flowers are on* the extremities of the branches ; are large, white, 
and expanded like a rofe, and are the largeft and moft complete of 
any yet known ; when fully expanded, they are from fix to nine 
inches diameter, and have a moft delicious fragrance. The cyprefs 
is the largeft of the American trees. " I have feen trunks of thefe 
*' trees," fays Bartram, " that would meafure eight, ten, and twelve 
*' feet in diameter, for forty and fifty feet ftraight fliaft." The trunks 
make excellent ftningles, boards, and other timber ; and when hol- 
lowed, make durable and convenient canoes. " When the planters 
" fell thefe mighty trees, they raife a ftage around them, as high as 
*' to reach above the buttreflTes ; on this ftage eight or ten negroes af- 
" cend with their axes, and fall to work round its trunk." 

The intervals between the hilly part of this country are extremely 
rich, and produce fpontaneoiifly the fruits and vegetables that are 
common to Georgia and the Carolinas. But this country is rendered 
valuable in a peculiar manner by its extenfive ranges for cattle. 

St. Auguftinc, the capital of Eaft-Florida, is fituated on the fea 
coaft, latitude 2(.j° 45'; is of an oblong figure, and interfet^ed by 
four ftreets, which cut each other at right angles. The town is for- 
tified with baftions, and inclofed with a ditch : it is likewife defended 
* Travils, page 83. 



by a caftle, called fort St. John, which is well appointed as to ord- 
nance. The north and fouth breakers, at the entrance of the har- 
tour, form two channels, whofe bars have eight feet water. 

The principal town in Weft-Florida is Penfacola, latitude 30° 22'. 
It lies along the beach, and, like St, Auguftine, is of an oblong form. 
The water approaches to the town except for imall veilels, are obr 
ftru6led by a low and fandy fliore. The bay, however, on which 
the town {lands, forms a very commodious harbour, and veflels may 
ride there fecure from every wind. The exports from this town, 
confifting of ikins, logwood, dying ttuff, and filver dollars, amounted, 
while in the poffeilion of the Britifli, on an average, to lixty-three 
thoufand pounds annually ; the average value of imports, for three 
yearsj from Great-Britain, was ninety-leven thoufand pounds. 


( 7^ ) 


-L/OUISIANA is bounded by the IVIiffiiUppi, on the ea{l ; by the 
gulf of Mexico, on the fouth ; by New-Mexico, on the wefi: ; and 
nins indefinitely north. Under the French government Louifiana 
included both fides of the Miffiffippi, from its mouth to the lihnois, 
and back from the river, eaft and weft indefinitely. 

The IMifliffippi, on which the fine country of Louifiana is fituatcd, 
was firfi: difcovered by Ferdinand de Soto, in 1541. Monfieur de la 
Salle was the firll who traverfed it. He, in the year 1682, having 
paffed down to the mouth of the Mifliffippi, and furveyed the adjacent 
country returned to Canada, from whence he took pafl"age to France, 

From the flattering accounts which he gave of the country, and 
the confequential advantages that would accrue from fettling a co- 
lony in thofe parts, Louis XIV. was induced to eftablifli a company 
for the purpofe. Accordingly a fquadron of four veflels, amply pro- 
vided with men and provifions, under the command of Monfieur de 
la Salle, embarkec'. with an intention of fettling near the mouth of the 
Miffifiippi ; but he unintentionally fiiiled a himdred leagues to the 
xvedward of it, where he attempted to efiablifti a colony ; but; 
through the unfavourablenefs of the climate, moil of his men mife- 
rably perifiied, and he himfelv was villanoufly murdered, not long 
after, by two of his own men. Monfieur Ibberville fucceeded him. 
in his laudable attempts. He, after two fuccefsful voyages, died 
while preparing for a third. Ci'ozat fucceeded him ; and in 171a} 
the king gave him Louifiana. This grant continued but a ftiort time 
after the death of Louis XIV. In 1763, Louifiana was ceded to the 
king of Spain, to whom it now belongs. 

This country is interfered by a number of fine rivers, among 
which are the St, Francis, which empties into the Miflilfippiat Kap- 
pas Old fort, navigable about two hundred and fifty or tlu'ee hundred 
miles ; its courfe is nearly parallel with the Mifiiflippi, and from 
twenty to thirty miles difrant from it ^ the Natchitoches, which, 



empties into the I\IilTdrippi above Point Coupee ; the Adayes or 
Mexicano river, emptying into the gulph of Mexico'; and the river 
Rouge, on which, it is well known, are as rich filver mines as any la 
Mexico. This is fuppoled to be one principal rcalbn why the 
exclulive na\ igation of the MllBirippi has been fo much infifted on by 

Louifiana is agreeably fitiiated between the extremes of heat and 
cold ; its climate varies as it extends towards the north. The 
fouthern parts, lying within the reach of the refrefliing breezes from 
the fca, are no^fcorchedlike thofe under the fame latitudes in Africa; 
and its northern regions are colder than thofe of Europe ander the 
lame parallels, with a wholefome ferene air. To judg? of the pro- 
duce to be expefted from the foil of Louifiana, we fliould turn our eyes 
to Egypt, Arabia Felix, Perfin, India, China, and Japan, all lyin* 
in correfponding latitudes. Of thefe, China alone has a tolerable 
government ; and yet it mufl be acknowledged, they all are, or have 
been, famous for their riches and fertility. From the favourablenefs 
of the climate, two annual crops of Indian corn may be produced j 
and the foil, with little cultivation, would ftirniih grain of every 
kind in the greateft abundance. The timber is as fine as any in the 
world, and the quantities of live oak, afli, mulberry, walnut, cherrv, 
cyprefs, and eedar, are aftonifliing. The neighbouihood of the 
MiffilFippi, befides, furni flies the richeft fru'ts in great variety ; the 
foil is particularly adapted to hemp, flax, and tobacco; and indigo 
ii at this time a llaple commodity, which ccmmonly yields the planter 
three or four cuttings a year. In a word, whatever is rich and rare, 
in the moll: deflrable climates in Europe, feems to be the fpontaneous 
produftion of this delightful country. The Mifllflippi and the neigh- 
bouring lakes furnifli in great plenty feveral forts of iifli, particularly 
perch, pike, fturgeon, and eels. 

In the northern part of Louifiana, forty-five miles below the mouth 
of the Ohio river, on the weft bank of the MiflilFippi, a fettlement is 
commenced, conduced by Colonel Morgan, of Xew-Jerfcy, under 
the patronage of the Spanifli king. The fpot on which the city is 
propofed to be built, is called New-Madrid, after the capital of Spain, 
and is in north latitude 36° 30'. 

The liiftits of the new city of Madrid are to extend four miles fouth, 
and two miles weft from the river, fo as to crofs a beautiful, living, 
deep lake, of the pureft fpring water, one hundred yards wide, and 



feveral miles in length, emptying itfelf, by a conllant rapid narrovf 
flream, tbrcA.)gh the center of the city. The banks of this lake, 
which is called St. Annis, are high, beautiful, and pleafant ; the 
waters deep, clear, and fvveet ; the bottom a clear fand, free 
from woodsj fhrubs, or other vegetables, and well ftored with 
fifli. On each fide of this delightful lake ftreets are laid out, one 
hundred feet wide, and a road is to be continued round it of the fame 
breadth ; and the trees are direfted to be preferred for ever, for the 
health and pleafure of the citizens. A flreet one hundred and twenty 
feet wide, on the banks of the Miffiffippi, is laid out, and the trees 
are dire^fled to be preferved for the flime purpofe; Twelve acres, in 
a central part, of the city, are to be referved in like manner, to be or- 
namented, regulated, and improved by the magiilracy of the city for 
public walks ; and forty half acre lots for other public ufesj and one 
lot of twelve acres for the king's ufe. 

New-Madridj from its local fituation and adventitious privileges, 
is in a profpeft of being the great emporium of the weftern country, 
unlefs the free navigation of the Ivliffiiuppi fliould be opened to the 
United States: and even fliouId this defired event take place, which 
probably will not without a rupture with Spain, this mufl be a place 
of great trader For here will naturally center the iramenfe quanti- 
ties of produce that will be borne down the Illinois, the Miffiffippi, 
the Ohio, and their various branches ; and if the carriers can finti as 
good a market for their cargoes here, as at New-Orleans, or the 
Weft-Indies, and can procure the articles they defire, they will gladly 
fave themfelves the difficulties and dangers of navigating the long 

The country in the vicinity of this intended city is reprefented as 
excellent, in many parts beyond defcription. The natural growth 
confifts of mulberry, locufc, f-ifiafras, walnut, hiccory, oak, afli, 
dog wood, &:c. with one or more grape vines runnmg up almoft 
every tree ; the grapes yield, from experiment, good red wine, in 
plenty and with little labour. In fome of the low grounds grow 
large cyprefs trees. The country is interfperfed with prairies, and 
now and then a cane patch of one hundred, and fome of one thoufand 
acres. Thcle prairies have no trees on them, but are fertile in grafs, 
flowering plants, ilrawberries, &c. and, when cultivated, produce good 
crops of wheat, barley, Indian, corn, flax, hemp, and tobacco, and 
arc eafily tilled. The climate is faid to be favourable for health, and 
to the culture of fruits of various kinds, and partie-ularly for garden 

& vcge- 


vegetables. Iron and lead mines, and fait fprings, it is afTerted, arc 
found in fuch plenty as to afford an abundant fupply of thcfc necef- 
fary articles. The banks of the jMiffiffippi, for many leagues in ex- 
tent, commencing about twenty miles above the mouth of Ohio, 
are a continued chain of lime-flone. A fine tra£t of high, rich, 
Jevel land, S. VV. by W. and N. W. of New-Madrid, about twenty- 
five miles wide, extends quite to the river St. Francis, 

It has been fuppofed by fome, that all fettlers who go beyond the 
Miffiffippi will be for ever loft to the United States. There is, we 
believe, little danger of this, provided they are not provoked to 
withdraw their friendfliip. The emigrants will be made up of the. 
citizens of the United States. They will carry along with them their 
manners and culloms, their habits of government, religion and edu- 
cation ; and as they are to be indulged with religious freedom, and 
with the privilege of making their own laws, and of conducing edu- 
cation upon their own plans, thefe American habits will undoubtedly 
be cheriflied ; if (o, they will be Americans in fa£f, while they are 
nominally the fubjeds of Spain. 

It is true, Spain will draw a revenue from them, but in return they 
will enjoy peculiar commercial advantages, the benefit of which will 
be experienced by the United States, and perhaps be an ample com- 
penfation for the lofs of fo many citizens as may migrate thither. In 
Ihort, this fettlement, if conduced with judgment and prudence, 
might be mutually ferviceable both to Spain and the United States ; 
it might prevent jealoufies ; lefTen national prejudices ; promote re- 
ligious toleration ; preferve harmony, and be a medium of trade re- 
ciprocally advantageous. 

But lit is well known that empire has been travelling from eaft to 
weft. Probably her laft and broadeft feat will be America. There 
the fciences and arts of civilized life arc to receive their higheft im- 
provements : there civil and religious liberty are to fiourifli, un- 
checked by the cruel hand of civil or eccleiiaftical tyranny : there 
genius, aided by all the improvements of former age?, is to be 
exerted in humanizing mankind, in expanding and enriching their 
minds with religious and phi'.ofophical knowledge, and in planning 
and executing a form of government, which will involve all the ex- 
cellencies of former governments, with as few of their defeifts as is 
confiftent with the imperfeftion of human affairs, and which will be 
calculated to protect and unite, in a manner confiftent with the na- 
tural rights of mankind, the largeft empire that ever exifted. Elcva- 

VoL.IV. L .ted 

74 General descripttion 

ted with thefe prof^er^^s, which are not merely the vifions of fancy, 
we cannot but anticipate the period, as not far diftant, when the 
American empire will comprehend millions of fouls weft of the 
Miffiflippi. Judging upon probable grounds, the MilUlTippi was 
never defigned as the weilern boundary of the American empire. 
The God of Nature never intended that fome of the beft part of his 
earth fliould be inhabited by the fiibje£ts of a monarch four thoufand 
miles from them. And we may venture to predift, that, when the 
rightii of mankind fhall be more fully known, ahd the knowledge of 
them io faft increafing both in Europe and America, the power of 
European potentates will be confined to Europe, and their prcfent 
American dominions become, like the United States, free, fovereign, 
and independent empires. 

It feems to depend on a timely adoption of a wife and liberal po- 
licy on the part of Spain, whether or not there fhall be a fpeedy re- 
volution in her American colonies. It is alTerted by the beft in- 
formed on the fubjeft, that there are not a hundred Spanifli families 
in all Louifiana and Weft-Florida ; the bulk of inhabitants are French 
people, who are inimical to the Spaniards, and emigrants from the 
United States, and a few Englifh, Scots, Dutch, and Irifii. This 
was the cafe in 1791; and as all emigrations to this country have 
fmce been, and will probably in future be, from the United States* 
and thefe emigrations are numerous, the time will foon come, when 
the Anglo Americans in this country will far exceed the num.ber of 
all other nations. 

The wretched policy of New-Orleans, unlefs changed, will haften 
a revolution in the Spanifli colonies. So long as the governor can 
diftate laws and difpenfe with them at his plcafure, and create mo- 
nopolies in trade for his own and his favourites' advantage, as is now 
the cafe, there can be no ftability in the commerce of this place. 
The exclufive right, even of fupplying the market with frefli beef, 
pork, veal, mutton, is monopolized. No farmer or planter is al- 
lowed to kill his own beef, fwine, calf, or flieep, and fend it to 
market ; he mull fell it to the king's butcher, as he is called, at the price 
he [is pleafed to give ; and this man retails it out at a certain price 
agreed upon by the governor, in juft fiich pieces as he thinks proper, 
through a -Cvindow or grate. Afk for a roafting piece, and he will give 
you a fhin or hrilket of beef; point to the piece you want, and he 
will tell yon it is engaged to your fupeiior. From fmiilar conduct-, 
turkies now fell for four or five dollars a piece, which; under the 



j^r^nch government, were in abundance for half a dollar. The mo- 
nopoly of flour is, if polTible, onftill a worfe footing for the inhabi- 
tant ; and the tobacco infpeftion yet more difcouraging to the planter. 
The GOVERNOR, or tbt crown, as it is calk J, mufl have an undL-fmcd 
advantage in every thing. Hence all are ripe for a revolution the mo- 
tnent one ihall offer witn profpe6l of being fupported, whether it 
fliall come from the United States, England, France, or internally 
from the inhabitants. 

It is faid to have been the fixed refolution of the Britifli minlftry to 
feize on New-Orleans, in the tirlt inftance, in cafe a rupture with 
Spain had taken place, as a necefl'ary prelude to an attack on the 
Spanifli pofleffions in the Weft-Indies and on the main. For this 
purpofe every bend of the river, every bay and harbour on the coaft, 
have been furveyed and founded with the utmoft exaftnefs, and 
all of them are better known to the Britifh than to the Spaniards them- 

Whilft the United States were engaged in the revolution war 
againlt England, the Spaniards attacked and poflefled themfelves of 
all the Englifli polls and fettlements on the Milfiffippi, from the 
Iberville up to the Yazoos river, including the Natchez country ; and 
by virtue of this conqueft are now peopling and governing an extent 
of country three degrees north of the United States' fouth boundary^ 
and claiming authority which no treaties warrant. This alone will 
probably be deemed fufficient caufe for the United States to joia 
with any other power againft Spain, the firft opportunity, as they 
conceive thefe territories belong to them by treaty. In fuch cafe, 
the Kentucky country alone could, in one |Week, raife a fufficient 
force to conquer all the Spanifti pofleffions on the Mifljffippi ; whilft 
one thoufand men would be equal to defend the whole country of 
New-Orleans and Louifiana from any enemy approaching it by fea. 
The greater a hofl;ile fleet entering the Miffiflippi, the greater and 
more certain would be their deftrudtion, if oppofed by men of know- 
ledge and refolution.* 


* The following extia£t of a letter from a gentleman at New-Orleans, dated Sep- 
tember, 1790, contains much ufeful information, in confirmation of the above : 

" When I left you and my other friends at Baltimore, lafl; year, I proraifed to write 
to you by every opportunity, and to communicate to you every information which I 
couU derive from my excurfion tothe Ohio, down that beautiful ftream, during my ftay 

L z at 


New-Orelans ftands on the eaft fide of the MifiifTippi, one hundred 
and five miles from its mouth, in latitude 30° z' north. In the begin- 

at Kentucky nnd the weftci-n ports, my vifit to the Illinois a^d the different fettlemencs 
on the MifTiflippi, from thence down to New-Orleans. 

" As I have devoted mwe than twelve months in making this tour, with the deter- 
mination to judge for myfclf, and to give you and my other friends information to be 
depended upon, regarding the climate, foil, natural piodu£fions, population, artd other 
advantages and di fad vantages, Which you may depend on finding in the country I have 
paiTed through, I cannot, within the narrow bounds of this letter, comply with my in- 
tention, and your wilh, but I muft beg of you to reft fatisfied with what follows : 

■.ji -s -.K -'t -.F •* ■■V -.1- * -.if -S- ',:: -.F -.F vif iF -.F ■X:_ ".F -.F -* 

" Nearly oppofite to Lxiifvilk is a ftockade fort, garrifoned by two companies of 
the firft United States regiment. What ufc thispofl: is of, I never could learn. — It is a 
mere hofpital in the fummer fcafon, and the grave of brave men, who might be ufe- 
t\]lly employed elfewhere. Fort Harmar is as remarkably healthful ; fo is the New- 
England fettlement at Muikingum ; and I the Miami fettlement will be healthful 
when the people have the comforts of good living about them ; at prefent they are the 
pooreft among the poor emigrants to this country, and not the beft managers. Below 
the falls, on the weft fide, is a miferable fettlement, called Clarkfville, frequently 
flooded, and co.mpofed of a people who cannot better themfelves at prefent, or I fuppofe 
ihey would not continue here. From thence I made an excurfion by land to Poft Vin- 
cent, diftant about one hundred miles : the fort here is garrifoned by two companies, at 
great exjienfe, but little ufe. Not liking the country on account of the many hoftile 
neighbouring Indians, I haftened out of it, and went wifh a party of Frenchmen to 
Kaflcaikias, in the Illinois country, and vifited Prairie des Rochcrs, St. Philip's, Belle 
Fontaine, and Kahokla ; from whence making up a party to purfue fome hoftile Kuka- 
jjoos, and fleering due eaft, we fell on the head waters of the Kalkalkia river, which we 
crofTed at fome diftance. This is a delightful country ! On our return to Kahokia, I 
croffcd over to St. Louis, on the Spanilh fide, but 1 did not proceed far into the country ; 
what I did fee I did not like, and the.efore bought a canoe and went down the Mifliftippi 
to St. Genevieve and the Saline. Not being plcafed witli thefe places, nor the country 
around, I embraced the company of fome French hunters and traders going towards the 
St. Francis river, in a fouth-weft diredlion from St. Genevieve. After travelling thirty 
miles ne.irly, I came to a fweet country ; here meeting with fome Shawancfe Indians 
going to I'Ance laGraife, and Ncw-Madiid, I made them a fmall prefent, and en- 
gaged them to cfcort me there, which they did through a country fine and beautiful be- 
yond defcription ; variegated by fmall hills, beautiful timber, and extenfive plains of 
luxuriant foil. Here the Spaniards are building a handfome fort, to encourage the fet- 
tlement by Americans, on a plan of Colonel Morgan's, of Ncw-Jerfey, which, had it 
Lfcn purf^ed, as propofed by him, would have made this the liift in all the wefteru 
country ; but they h.i\c deviated from ir, fo much as to difcourage the fettlement, and 
in.»ny iijvc left it. Thebanksof the MifTuTippi overflow above and below the town, 
lut tiic Ljuiitry b.ick fiuai the river is incomparably beautiful and fine. I made a 



nlng of the year 1787 it contained about one thoufand one hundred 
houfes, feven-eights of which were confumed by fire in the fpace 
of five hours, on the i9thofMar:h, 1788. It is now rebuilt. Its 
advantages for trade are very great. Situated on a noble river, ia 
a fertile and healthy country, within a week's fail of ATexico by 
lea, and as near to the Britifli, French, and Spanifli Weft-India 
iflands, with a moral certainty of its becoming the general receptacle 
for the produce of that extenfive and valuable country, on the Mif- 
lilfippi and Ohio ; thefe circumilances are fufficient to enfure its fu- 
ture growth and commercial importance. 

The greater pai't of the white inhabitants are Roman Catholics ; 
they are governed by a viceroy from Spain ; the number of inhabi- 
tants is unknown. 

tour back to the rhxr St. Francis, dillanr about twenty-eight or rhiity miles, and re- 
turned by another route move fouthwaiJ, to my great fatisfaiftion. Expreffing to fomc 
of the people, at New-Madrid, my furj.rife at Colonel S'^**'s account of this country, 
I was told that he never went one hundred yards back from the river, either on the 
Ohio or Miffiffippi, except once, and that was at I'Ance la Graife, where a horfe was 
provided for him, and he rode fifteen or twenty miles, and returned fo enraptured with 
the countiy, that he would not liften to the propofed fettlement of New- Madrid being 
fixed at any other place ; and he adlually applied to Colonel Morgan for forty fuvveys, 
inoft of which were executed ; and he entered into obligations for fettlemenis thereoa j 
but the Colonel refufmg to grant him three hundred acres of the town lots, for a farm, 
as it would be injurious to other applicants of equal merit, S*** fwore he would do 
every thing in his power to injure Morgan and the fettlement ; which it feems he has 
endeavoured to do, to the ruin, however, of his own reputation. I am fatisfied that 
the failure of this fettlement is only owing to a narrow; policy in the Spanifh govern- 
ment, or to a deviation from their firft plan, and not from the caufes reprefented by its 
enemies. This is the country, of all others, I have feen, which I would wilh to 
fettle in, had Colonel Morgan's plan been adopted, or carried into execution ; and 
thoufands among the beft people of the weftern country would already have been 
fettled here. Why it was not, I know not ; but I am told jealoufy of his fuccefs was 
the caufe. 

" After continuing two months in this delightful country, I proceeded to the Natchct, 
which has already become a conlidemble fettlemt-nt, and is now under the government of 
Don Gayofo, a man greatly beloved ; but the Spanilh government, though I think it 
liberal at prefent, will not long agree with American ideas of liberty and juftice; 
and a revolution is now in embryo, which a fmall matter will blow to a flame ; and 
New-Orleans itfelf will be at the incrcy of new fubjefts, if joined by a handful of tb« 
Kentucky people. 


( 75 ) 


i-V^ EXICO is fituated between 9° and 40** north-latitude, and i8* 
and 50'' weft-longitude. Its length is two thoufand one hundred 
miles, dP.d breadth one thoufand fix hundred. It is bounded on the 
north, by unknown regions ; on the eaft, by Louifiana and the gulph 
of Mexico ; on the louth, by the ifthmus of Darien, which feparates 
it from Terra Firma in South-America ; and on the weft, by the 
PaciHc ocean. 

This vaft country is divided into three grand divifions, viz. 
I. Old-Mexico. 2. New-TvIexico Proper. 3. Califorina, 
lying on the weft, and a peninmla. 


The ancient kingdom of Mexico, properly fo called, was divided 
into feveral provinces, of which ths vale of Mexico itfeif was th«f 
fineft in every refpeft. This vale is furroundedby verdant mountains, 
meafuring upwards of one hundred and twenty miles in circumfer- 
ence at their bafe. A great part of it is occupied by two lakes, the 
upper one of frefti water, but fhe lower one brackifli, communica- 
ting with the former by means of a canal. All the water running 
from the mountains is collefted in this lower lake, on account of its 
being in the bottom of the valley ; hence it was ready, when fvvelled 
by extraordinary rain, to overflow fhe city of Mexico. This delight- 
ful region contained the three imperial cities of Mexico, Acolhuacan, 
and Tlacopan ; befides forty others, with innumerable villages and 
hamlets ; but the moft confiderable of thefe, according to Clavigero, 
now fcarcely retain one twentieth part of their former magnificence. 
The principal inland provinces to ths north vard were the Otomies ; 
to the fouth-weft the Malatzincas and Cuitlatecas ; to the fouth the 
Tlahuicas and Cohuixcas ; to the fouth-eaft, after the ftates of Itzo- 
can, Jauhtcpac, Q^uauhquccollon, Atlixco, Tehuacan, and others, 
were the great provinces of the Mixtccas, the Zapotecas, and the 
Chiapanecas ; towards the cafi; were the provinces of Tcpayacac, the 
Popolocas, and Totonacas. Tlie maritime provinces on the Mexican 

I gulf 


gulf were Coatzacualco and Cuetlachtlan, called by the Spaniards 
Cotafta. On the Pacific ocean were thofe of Coliman, ZacatoUan, 
Tototepec, Tecuantepec, and Zoconochco. 

The province of the Otomics began in the northern part of the vale 
of Mexico, extending through the mountains to the north, to the 
diftance of ninety miles from the city of Mexico ; the principal cities 
being Tollan, or Tula, and Xilotepec : the latter made the capital of 
the country by the Spaniards. Beyond the fettlements of the Otomies, 
the country for more than a thoufand miles in extent was inhabited 
only by barbarous and wandering favages. 

The Malatzinca province contained the valley of Tolocan, and all 
the country from Taximaroa to the frontier of the kingdom of Mi- 
chuacan. The valley of Tolocan is upwards of forty miles long from 
fouth-eaft to north-wefi:, and thirty in breadth, where broadeft. Its 
principal city, named alfo Tolocan, is fituated at the foot of a high 
mountain covered withfnow, thirty miles diftant from Mexico. 

The country of the Cuitlatecas extended from north-eaft to fouth- 
weft, upwards of two hundred miles, extending as far as the Pacific 
ocean. Their capital was named Mexcaltepec, once a great and po- 
pulous city, fituated upon the fea coaft, but of vi^hich the ruins are 
now fcarcely vifible. That of the Tlahuicas was named Quauhna- 
huac, and fituated about forty miles to the fouthward of Mexico, The 
province extended almoft fixty miles fouthward, commencing from 
the fouthern mountains of the vale of Mexico. 

The country of the Cohuixcas extended on the fouthward as far as 
the Pacific ocean, through that part where at prefent the port and 
city of Acapulco lie. It was divided into the ftates of Tzompanco, 
Chilapan, Tlapan, and Tiftla ; the latter a very hot and unwholefome 
country. To this province belonged a place named Tlachco, cele- 
brated for its filver mines. 

The province of the Mixtecas extended from Acatlan, a place 
diftant about one hundred and twenty miles from Mexico, as far as 
the Pacific ocean towards the fouth-eaft. The inhabitants carried on 
a confiderable commerce, and had feveral well-inhabited cities and 
villages. To the eaft of the Mixtecas were the Zapotecas, fo called 
from their capital Teotzapotlan. In their diftrict was the valley of 
Huaxyacac, now Oaxaca, or Guaxaca. 

The province of Mazatlan lay to the northward of the Mixtecas ; 
and to the northward and eaftward of the Zapotecas was Chimantla, 
having their capitals of the fame name with their provinces. The 



Chiapanecas, Zoqui, and Qneleni, were the laft of the Mexican pro- 
vinces towards the fouth-eaft. On the fide of the mountain Popoca- 
tepec, and around it, lay feveral fiates, of which the moft confide- • 
rable were Cholallan and Huexotzinco. Thefe two having, with the 
aifillance of theTlafcalans, fliaken off the Mexican yoke, re-efiabliflied 
their fonner ariftocratical government. The Cholulans poflefied a 
fmall hamlet called Cuitlaxcoapan, in the place where the Spa- 
niards afterwards founded the city of Aiigelopoli, which is the fecond 
of New- Spain. 

To the eaftward of Cholula lay a confiderable flate named Te- 
peyacac ; and beyond that the Popolocas, whole principal cities were 
Tecamachalco and Quecholac. To the fouthward of the Popolocas 
was the flate of Tahuacan, bordering upon the country of the Mix- 
tecas J to the eaft, the maritime province of Cuetlachtkn ; and to 
the north, the Tofonacas. The extent of this province was one 
hundred and fifty miles, beginning from the frontier of Zacatlan, a 
Hate diflant about eighty miles from the court, and terminating in 
the gulf of Mexico. Bcfides the capital, named Mizquihuacan, this 
country had the beautiful city of Chempoallan, fituated on the coail 
of the gulf, remarkable for being that by which the Spaniards entered 
the Mexican empire, 

Coliman was the moft northerly of the province on the Pacific ocean ; 
the capital, named alfo Coliman, being in latitude 19, longitude 
37° 2'. Towards the fouth-eaft was the province of Zacotlan, with its 
capital of the fame name; then came the coaft of the Cuitlatecas; 
after it that of the Cohuxicans, in which was the celebrated port of 
Acapulco. The Jopi bordered on the Cohuixca coaft ; and adjoin- 
ing to that the Mixteca country, now called Xicayan ; next to that 
was the large province of Tecuantepec ; and laftly, that of Xocho- 

This province, the moft foutherly of the Mexican empire, was 
bounded on the eaft and fouth-eaft by the country of Xochitepec, 
which did not belong to Mexico ; on the weft by Tecuantepec ; and 
on the iouth by the ocean. The capital, called alfo Xoconochco, was 
fituated between two rivers, in 14 degrees of latitude, and a 8° 3.' of 
Jongiiude. On the Mexican gulf there were, befides the country of 
Totonecas, the provinces of Cuetlachtlan and Coatzacqalco ; the latter 
bounded on the eaft by the States of Tabafco, and the peninl'ula of 
"Vucatan. The province of Cuetlachtlan comprehended all the coaft 



l>€t\veen the river Alvarado and Antigua, where the province of the 
Totonecas began. 

The climate of this vnit country varies much according to the fitua- 
tion of its ditFerent parts. Tlie maritime places are hot, unhealthy, 
and moid ; the heat being fo great as to caufe people to fweat even ia 
the month of January. This heat is fuppofed to be owing to the flat- 
nefs of the coafts, and the accumulation of fand upon them. The 
nioifture arifes from the vaft evaporation fiom the fea, as well as from 
the great torrents of water defcending from the mountains. The 
lands which lie in the neighbourhood of high mountains, the tops of 
which are always covered with fnow, muft of neceflity be cold ; and 
Clavigero informs us, that he has been on a mountain not more thaa 
twenty-five miles dilKint from the city of Mexico, where there was 
white froft and ice even in the dog days. " All the other inland 
coimtries," fays the fame author, " where the greateft population 
prevailed, enjuy a climate fo mild and benign, that they neither feel 
the rigour of winter nor the heat of fummer. It is true, in many 
of the countries, there is frequently white froft in the three months 
of December, January, and February, and fometimes even it fnows ; 
but the finall inconvenience which fuch cold occafions, continues 
only till the rifing fun : no other fire than his rays isneceflary to give 
warmth in winter ; no other relief is wanted in the feafon of heat but 
the {hade : the fame clothing whieh covers men in the dog-days, 
defends them in January, and the animals deep all the year under 
the open flcy. 

" This mildnefs and agreeablenefs of climate under the torrid 
zone is the effeft of feveral natural caufes entirely unknown to the 
ancients, who did not believe it to be inhabited, and not well under- 
ftood by fome moderns, by whom it is believed unfavourable to thofc 
who live in it. The purity of the atmofphere, the fmaller obliquity 
of the folar rays, and the longer ftay of this luminary above the ho- 
rizon in winter, in comparifon of other regions farther removed fro.m 
the equator, concur to leffen the cold, and to prevent all that horror 
which disfigures the face of nature in other clime?. Duiing that 
feafon a ferene (ky and the natural delights of &4t country are en- 
joyed ; whereas under the frigid, and even for the moft part under 
the temperate zones, the clouds rob man of the profpect of heaven, 
and the fnow buries the beautiful *■ •odu<5Vions of the earth. No lefs 
caufes combine to temper the heat of fummer. The plentiful Ihowers 
which freqi;ently water the earfh after mid-day, from Apiil or May, 

Vol. IV. M to 


to September or Odober ; the high mountains, continually loaded 
with fnow, fcattered here and there through the country of Anahuac ; 
the cool winds which breathe from them in that feafon ; and the 
fliorter ftay of the fun above the horizon, compared with the cir- 
cumftances of the temperate zone, transform the climes of thofc 
happy countries into a cool and cheerful fpring. But the agreeable- 
nefs of the climate is counterbalanced by thunder ftorms, which arc 
frequent in fummer, particularly in the neighbourhood of the moun- 
tain of Tlafcala ; and by earthquakes, which are at all times felt, 
though with lefs danger than terror. Storms of hail arc neither more 
frequent nor more fevere than in Europe." 

One undoubted inconvenience which Mexico has, is that of volca- 
noes, of which Clavigero enumerates five. One named by the Spa- 
niards Volcon d'Orizaba, is higher than the peak of Teneriffe, ac- 
•ording to the account of the Jefuit Tallandier, who meafured them 
both. It began to fend forth fmoke in the year 1545, and continued 
burning for tvi'enty years, but has not difcovered any fymptoms of 
eruption fincc that time. It is of a conical figure, and by reafon of 
its great height, may be feen at fifty leagues diftance. The top 
is always covered with fnow, but the lower part with woods, of 
pine and other valuable timber. It is about ninety miles to the ealt- 
ward of the capital. 

Two other mountains, named Fopocatepec and Iztaccihuatl, 
■which lie near each other, at the diftance of thirty-three miles to the 
fouth-eaft of Mexico, are likewife furprifingly higli. Clavigero 
fuppofes the former to be higher than the higheft of the Alps, coafi- 
dering the elevated ground on which the bafe of it ftands. It has a 
crater more than half a mile wide ; from which, in the time of the 
Mexican kings, great qxiantitits of fmoke and flame iflued. In the 
laft century it frequently threw out great (howers of aflies upon the 
adjacent places ; but in this century hardly any fmoke has been ob- 
ferved. This mountain is named by the Spaniards Volcan, and the 
other Sierra JSJevada : the latter has alfo fometimes emitted flamcf. 
Both ot them have their tops always covered with fnow in fuch quan- 
tities, that the mafles which fall down upon the neighbouring rocks 
fupply the cities of Mexico, Gelopoli, Cholula, and all the adjacent 
country to the diftance of forty miles, with that commodity, of 
which the confumptionisfo great, that in 1746 the impoll upon what 
was confumed in the city of Mexico, amounted to fifteen thoufand 
two hundred and twelve Mexican crowns; fomc years after, it 



amounted to twenty thoufand, and is now in all probability a great 
deal more. Befides thefe, there are the two mountains of Cohmau 
and Tochtlan, both of which have occafionally emitted flames. Cla- 
vigero does not include in the lift of Mexican volcanoes, either thofe 
of Nicaragua or Guatimala, becaufe thffe countries were not fubject 
to the Mexican fovereigns. Thofe of Guatimala fometimes break 
forth in a moft furious manner, and in the year 1773 entirely de- 
ftroyed that beautiful city. The Nicaraguan volcano, called Juruyo 
was only a fmall hill before the year 1760. In that year, however, 
on the 29th of September, it began to burn with furious explofions, 
ruining entirely the fugar v\ork, and the neighbouring village of 
Guacana : and from that time continued to emit fire and burning 
rocks in fuch quantities, that the erupted matters in fix years had 
formed themfelves into three high mountains, nearly fix miles in cir- 
cumference. During the time of the firft eruption, the allies were 
carried as far as the city of Queretaro, one hundred and fifty miles 
diftant from the volcano ; and at Valladolid, diftant fixty miles from it, 
the fhower was fo abundant, that the people were obhged to fvveep 
the houfe yards two or three times a day. 

Befides thefe volcanoes, there are others in Mexico of a very re- 
markable height. The great chain of mountains called the Andes, are 
continued through the ifthmus of Panama, and through all Mexico, 
until they are loft in the unknown mountains of the north. The 
moft confiderable of that chain is known in Mexico by the name of 
Sierra Madre, particularly in Cinalo and Tarahumara, provinces 
no lefs than one thoufand two hundred miles diftant from the ca- 

Mexico is well watered by very confiderable rivefs, though none 
of them are comparable to thofe of South-America. Some of thefe 
run into the gulf of Mexico, and others into the Pacific ocean. The 
Alvarado has its principal fource among the mountains of the Zapo- 
tecas, and difcharges itfelf by three navigable mouths into the'Mexi- 
can gulf, at the diftance of thirty miles from Vera Cruz. The Coat- 
zocualco rifes among the mountains of the Mixtecas, and empties 
itfelf into the gulf near the country of Onohualco. The river Chia- 
pan, which likewife runs into this gulf, rifes among the mountains 
which feparate the diftrift of Chiapan irom that of Guatimala. The 
Spaniards call this river Tabafco, by which name they alfo called that 
trad of land which unites Yucatan to the Mexican continent. It was 


alfo called Grijalva, from the name of the commander of the Spanifli 
fleet who difcovered it. 

The moft celebrated of the rivers which run into the Pacific ocean, 
is that called by the Spaniards Guadalaxara, or Great river. It rifes 
in the mountains of Toloccan ; and after running a courfe of 
more than fix hundred miles, difcharges itfelf into the ocean in zz'^ 

There are likewife in this country feveral lakes of very conhde- 
rable magnitude , but thofe of Nicaragua, Chapallan, and Pazquaro, 
which are of the greatefl extent, did not belong to the ancient Mexi- 
can empire. The moft remarkable were thofe in the vale of Mexico, 
upon which the capital of the empire was founded. Ofthefe, the 
frefli water one called the lake of Chaico, extended in length from 
eaft to weft twelve miles, as far as the city of Xochimilco ; from 
thence, taking a northerly direction, it incorporated itfelf by means 
of a canal with the lake of Tezcuco ; but its breadth did not exceed 
iix miles. The other, nan^.ed the lake of Tezcuco, extended fifteen, 
or rather feventeen miles from eail; to weft, and fomething more from 
fouth to north; but its extent is now much lefs, by reaibn of the 
Spaniards having diverted the courfe of many of the ftreams which 
run into it. This lake is fait, which Clavigero luppofes to arife from 
the nature of the foil which forms its bed. 

Befides thefe, there are a number of fmaller lakes, fome of which 
are very delightful. There is a vaft variety of mineral waters, of the 
nitrous, fulphureous, and aluminous kinds, fome of them fo hot, 
that meat might be boiled in them. At Tctuhuacan is a kind ot 
petrifying water, as well as in feveral other parts of the empire. 
One of them forms a kind of fmooth white ftones, not difpleafing to 
the tafte ; the fcra pings of which taken in broth are celebrated as a 
diaphoretic, probably without any good reafon. The dofe for a 
perfon not difficult to be fvveated is one dram of the fcrapings. 
Many of the rivers of Mexico afford furprifing and beautiful caf- 
cades, particularly the great river Guadaiaxara, at a place called 
Tempizque, fifteen miles to the fonthward of that city. Along a 
deep river called Atoyaque, is a natural bridge, confifting of a vaft 
moimd of earth, along which carriages pafs conveniently. Clavigero 
fuppofes it to have been the fragment of a mountain thrown down by 
an earthquake, and then penetrated by the river. 

The mineral produftions of Mexico are very valuable ; the na- 
tives found gold in feveral provinces of the empire ; they gathered it 



principally from among the fands of their rivers in grains, and the 
people in vvhofe country it was found, were obliged to pay a certaui 
quantity by way of tribute to the ernperor. They dug lilver out of 
the mines in Tlochco, and ibme other countries ; but it was lefs 
pri'zed by them than by other nations. Since th^ coaquell:, how- 
ever, fo many lilver mines have been difcovered in ttiat country, ef- 
pecially in the provinces to the north-well o; the cap;ti!, that it is in 
vain to attempt any enumeraiion of them. They had two fcMts of 
copper; one hard, vvhicli ferved them inilea.d of iron, to n.ake axes 
and other inftruments for war and agriculture ; the other kind, 
which was foft and flexible, ferved for domeftic utenfils as with us. 
They had alfo tin from the mines of Tlachco, and dug lead out of 
mi^ies in the country of the Otomies, but we are not informed 
what ufes they put this lad metal to. They had likewifc mines of 
iron in Tlafcala, Tlachco, and fome other places ; but th^fe were ei- 
ther unknown to the Mexicans, or they did not know how to benefit 
themfelves by them. In Chilapan were mines of quickiilver ; and in 
iTiany places they had fulphur, alum, vitriol, cinnabar, ochre, and 
an earth greatly refembling white lead. Thefe minerals were em- 
ployed in painting and dyeing, but we know not to what uk they 
put their quickfilver. There was great abundance of amber and af- 
phaltum upon their coafts, both of which were paid in tribute to the 
king of Mexico from many parts of the empire : the former was 
wont to be fet in gold by way of ornainent, and afphalt6m was em- 
ployed in their facriiices. 

Mexico produces fome diamonds, though but few in number ; 
but they had in greater plenry fome other precious flcnes, fuch as 
amethyfts, cats eyes, turquoifes, cornelians, and lome green Hones 
refembling emeralds, and very little inferior to them, of all which a 
tribute was paid to the emperor by the people in whole territories 
they were found. They were likewile furniflied with chiyflal in 
plenty from the mountains which lay on the coaft of the Mexican 
gulph, between the port of Vera Cruz and the river Coatzacualco. 
In the mountains of Celpolalpan, to the eaftward of Mexico, were 
quarries of jafper and marble of diflerent colours : they had likewife 
alabafter at a place called Tecalco, now Tecale, in the neighbour- 
hood of the province of Tapeyacac, and many otjier pat ts of the em- 
pire. The ftone tetzontli is generally of a dark red colour, pretty 
hard, porous, and light, and unites mod firmly with lime and fand, 
on which account it is of great requell for buildings in the capital, 



where the foundation is bad. There are entire mountains of load-r 
Sone, a very confiderable one of which lies between Teoitztlan and 
Cliilapan, in the country of the Cohuixcas. They formed curious 
figures of nephritic ftone, fome of which are Itiil preferved in Euro- 
pean mufeums. They had a kind of fine white talc, which burnt into 
an excellent plafter, and with which they uled to whiten their painr- 
ings. But the moft ufeful itone they had, was that called itztli, of which 
there is great abundance in many parts of Mexico : it has a glolTy ap- 
pearance, is generally of a black colour, aud femi-tranfparent ; though 
fometimes alfo of a blue or white colour. In South-America this 
ifone is called pietra del galinazzo ; and Count Caylus endeavours to 
iliow, in a manufcript dilTertation quoted by Bomare, that the obfi- 
diona, of which the ancients made their vafes murini, were entirely 
Smilar to this ftone. The Mexicans made of it looking-glaffes, 
knives, lancets, razors, and fpears. Sacred vafes were made of it 
after the introdu6tion of Chriftianity, 

The foil of Mexico, though various, produced every where the 
neceffaries, and even the luxuries of life. *' The celebrated Dr. 
Hernandez, the Pliny of New-Spain," fays Clavigero, " has de- 
icxibed in his Natural Hiltory about one thoufand two hundred plants, 
natives of the country ; but his defcription, though large, being 
confined to medicinal plant?, has only comprifed one part of what 
provident nature has produced therefor the benefit of mortals. With 
regard to the other clafTes of vegetables, fome are eileemed for their 
flowers, fome for their fruit, fome for their leaves, fome for their 
root, ferae for their trunk or their wood, and others for their gum, 
refin, oil, or juice." 

Mexico abounds with a great variety of flowers, many of which 
are peculiar to the country, while multitudes of others imported 
fiom Europe and Afia rival in luxuriance the natives of the country 
itfelf. The fruits are partly natives of the Canary iflands, partly of 
Spain, befides thoie which grow naturally in the couptry. The 
exotics are water melons, apples, pears, peaches, quinces, apricots, 
pomegranates, figs, black cherries, walnuts, alnwnds, olives, chef- 
mts, and grapes; though thefe laft are likewife natives. There are 
two kinds of wild vine found in the country of the Mixtecas, the one 
refembling the common vine in the flioots and figure of its leaves ; 
h produces large red grapes covered with an hard Ikin, but of fweet 
and grateful tafte, which would undoubtedly improve greatly by 
culture. The grape of the other kin<l is hard, large, and of a very 


liarfll tafle, but thc-y make an excellent conferve of it. Clavigero 
is of opinion that the cocoa tree, plantain, citron, orange, and le- 
mon, came from the Philippine iflands and Canaries ; but it is cer- 
tain that thele, as well as other trees, thrive in this country as weii 
as in their native foil. All the maritime countries abound with cocoa 
nut trees ; they have feven kinds of oranges, and four of lemons, 
and there are likewife four kinds of plantains; the largeft, called 
the zapalat, is from fifteen to twenty inches long, and about three in 
diameter ; it is hard, little efteem.ed, and only eat when roaikd or 
boiled. The flatano largo, or " long plantain," is about eight 
inches long, and one and a half in diameter ; the fkin is at firft green, 
and blackifli when perfeftly ripe. The guiiico is a fmaller fruit, but 
richer, fofter, and more delicious, though not fo vvholefomc. A 
fpecies of plantain, called the dominico, is fmaller and more delicate 
than the others. There are whole woods of plantain trees, oranges, 
and lemons; and the people of IMichuacan cany on a conliderablc 
commerce with the dried plantains, which are preferable eiiher to 
raifins or figs. Clavigero enumerates twerity-eight different Ibrts of 
fruit, natives of Mexico, befuki; man}' others, the names of which 
are not mentioned. Hernandez mentions four kinds of cocoa nuts, 
of which the fmalleft of the whole was in the moll: ufe for chocolate 
and other drinks daily made ufe of; the other kinds ferved rather for 
money in commerce than for aliment. The cocoa was one of the 
plants raoft cultivated in the warm countries of the empu-e, and many 
provinces paid it in tribute to the emperor, particularly that of Xo- 
eonochco, the cocoa nut of which is preferable to the others. Cotton 
was one of the moll valuable produftions of the country, as it ferved 
inftead of flax, though this laft alfo wa? produced in the country: it 
is of two [kinds, white and tawny-coloured. The}^ made ufe of 
rocoU) orBrafil-wood in their dying, as the Europeans alfo do : they 
naade cordage of the bark, and the wood was made ufe of to pro- 
duce fire by friftion. 

The principal grain of Mexico, before the introdu'flion of thoff 
from Europe, was maize, in the Mexican language called tJuolli, of 
whi-ch there were feveral kinds, diifering in fize, weight, colour, 
and tafte. This kind of grain was brought irom America to Spain, 
and from Spain to oth§r countries of Europe. The French bean was 
the principal kind of puife in ufe among them, of which there 
were more fpecies than of the maize ; the largeft was called 
ayacotli, of the fizeofa commpn bean, with a beautiful red flower ; 



but the mnft efteetned was the fma'l, black, heavy French beart. 
This kind of puHe, which is not good in Italy, is in Mexico fo ex- 
cellent, that it not only ferves for fuftenance to the pooref chls of 
people, but is eftecmed a luxury even by the Spanifii nobility. 

Of the efcuient roots of Mexico, the following were the moft re- 
iriai-kable'. i. The xicama, called by the Mexicans catzotl, was of 
\hc figure and fize of an onion, folid, frefh, juicy, and of a white 
colour; it was always eat raw. z. The camote, is another, very 
common iii the country, of which there are three forts, white, yel- 
iow, and purple : they eat beft when boiled. 3. The cacomite, 18 
the root of a plant which has a beautiful flower called the tyger 
flower, wiih three red pointed petals, the middle part mixed with 
Tshite and yellow, fomewhat refcmbling the fpots of the creature 
whence it takes its name. 4. The huacamote, is the root of a kind of 
Caffava plant, and is iikewife boiled. 5. The papa, a root tranf- 
planted into Europe, and greatly valued in Ireland, wa:; brought 
from South-America into Mexico. Befides al! which they have a 
mimber of kitchen vegetables imported from the Canaries, Spain, 
and other countries of Europe. The American aloe is very fimilar 
to the real one, and is a plant of which the Mexicans formerly, and 
the Spaniards ftill, make great ufe. 

They have a variety of palm trees. From the fibres of the leaves 
t)f one fpecies they make thread : the bark of another kind> to the 
depth of three fingers, is a mafs of membranes, of which the p®or 
people n>ake mats : the leaves of another kind are ufcd for ornaments 
in their feftivals : they are round;, grofs^ white, and Ihining, hav- 
ing the 'appearance of fliells heaped upon one another. A 
fourth kind bears nuts called cocoas, or nuts of oil. Thefe nuts 
are of the fize of a nutmeg, havmg in the infide a white, oily, 
eatable kernel, coveied by a thin purple pellicle. The oil has a 
fweet Icenr, but is eafily condenfud, when it becomes a folt mafs^ as 
white as fiiow. 

Of timber trees there are great variety, of a quality not inferior 
to any in the v.orld ; and as there are a variety of climates iti the 
country, every one produces a kind of wood peculiar to itlelf. There 
are whole woods of cedars and ebonies, vail quantities of agallochum, 
or wood of aloes ; befides others valuable on account of their weight, 
durability and hardntff, or for their being eafily cut, pliable, of a 
fine colour, or an agreeable flavour. There are alfo in I\Iexico innu- 
^eiable trees remarkable for their fize. Acofta mentions a cedar, 
z the 


the trunk of which was lixteen fathoms in circumference; and 
Clavigero mentions one of the length of one hundicd and feven 
Paris feet. In the city of Mexico he mentions very large tables of 
cedar made out of fingle planks. In the valley of Atlixco is a very 
ancient fir tree, hollowed by lightning, the cavity of which could 
conveniently hold fourteen horfemen ; nay, we are informed by 
the archbiflrop of Toledo, that in 1770 he went to view it along 
with the archbifhop of Guatimala, at which time he caufed 
an hundred young lads to enter its cavity. Our author mentions 
feme other trees, of the fpecies called ceiba, which for magnitude 
may be compared with this celebrated fir : " The largenefs of thefe 
trees," fays he, " is proportioned to their prodigious elevation, and 
they afford a moll delightful profpe<ft at the time they are adorned 
with new leaves and loaded with fruit, in which there is inclofed a 
particular fpecies of fine, white, and moll delicate cotton: this might 
be, and aftually has been, made into webs as foft, delicate, and 
perhaps more fo than filk ; but it is toilfome to fpin, on account of 
the fmallaefs of the threads, and the profit does not requite the la- 
bour, the web not being lafting. Some ufe it for pillows and mat- 
treffes, which have the fingular property of expanding enormoufly 
when expofed to the heat of the fun. De Bomare fays, that the Afri- 
cans make of the thread of the ceiba that vegetable taffety which 
is fo fcarce, and fo much elleemed in Europe. The fcarcity of 
fuch cloth is not to be wondered at, confidering the difficulty of 
making it. The ceiba, according to this author, is higher thaiv 
all other trees yet known." 

Clavigero mentions a Mexican tree, the wood of which is very 
valuable, but poifonous, and if incautiouHy handled when frefli 
cut, produces a fwelling in the fcrotum. He has forgot the name 
given to it by the Mexicans, nor has he ever feen the tree itfelf, nor 
been witnefs to the effect. 

This country abounds alfo with aromatic and medicinal trees, pro- 
ducing gums, refins, &c. From one of thefe a balfam is produced, 
not in the leall inferior to the celebrated balfam of Mecca ; it is of a 
reddilh black or yellowifli white, of a fliarp, bitter talle, and of a 
ftrong but mofl grateful odour ; it is common in the provinces of 
Panuco and Chiapan, and other warm countries : the kings of 
Mexico caufed it to be tranfplanted into their celebrated garden of 
Huaxtepec, where it flourilhed, and was afterwards multiplied in 
all the neighbouring mountains. The Indians, in order to procure 

Vol. IV. N a greater 


a greater quantity of this balfam, burn the branches, which aftbrd 
more than mere diflillation, though undoubtedly of an inferior qu» 
lity ; nor do they regard the lofs of the trees, which are very abun- 
dant : the ancient Mexicans were wont to extract it alfo by decoftion. 
The firft parcel of this balfam brought from Mexico to Rome was 
fold at one hundred ducats per ounce, and was, by the apoftolic 
fee, declared to be matter fit for chrifm, though different from 
that of Mecca, as Acofta and all other writers on this fubje<^ ob- 
ferve* An oil is likewife drawn from the fruit of this tree fimilar 
in tafle and fmell to that of the bitter almond, but more acrimoni- 
ous. From two other trees, named the huaconex and maripenda, 
an oil was extradled equivalent to the baliam : the former is a 
tree of a moderate height, the wood of which is aromatic, and fo 
hard, that it will keep frefli for feveral years, though buried under 
the earth: the leaves are fmall and yellow, the flowers likewifefmall 
and white, and the fruit fimilar to that of the laurel. The oil was 
dillilled from the bark of the tree, after breaking it, and keeping it 
three days in Iprjng water, and then drying it in the fun : the leaves 
likewife afforded an agreeable oil by diiliUation. The maripenda is 
a fluub with lanceolated leaves, the fruit of a red colour when ripe, 
and refembiing the grape. The oil is extra6ted by boiling the branches 
with a mixture of fome of the fruit. 

The trees producing liquid amber, the liquid ftorax of the Mexi- 
cans, is of a large fize, the leaves fnnilar to thofe of the maple, in- 
dented, white in one part and dark in the other, difpofed of in 
threes; the fruit is thorny and round, but polygonous, with the 
the furface and the angles yellow ; the bark of the tree partly green 
and partly tawny. By incifions in the trunk they extra 6r that va- 
luable fubftance named liquid amber, and the oil of the fame name, 
which is ftill more valuable. Liquid amber is likewife obtained 
from a deccftion of the branches, but it is inferior to that obtained 
from the trunk. 

The name copalli in Mexico is generic, and common to all the 
refins, but efpecially fignifies thole made ule of for incenfe. There 
are ten fpecies of thefe trees yielding refins of this kind, the prin- 
cip;!l of which is that from which the copal is got, fo well known in 
medicine and varnifties. A great quantity of this was made \\k of 
by the ancient Mexicans, and is ftill ufed for fimilar purpofes by 
the Spaniards. The tccopalli, or tepecopalli, is a refin fimilar to 
the incenfe of Arabia, which diftils from a tree of moderate fize 



that grows in the mountains, having a fruit like an acorn, and con- 
taining the nut inveloped in a mucilage, within which there is a 
fmall kernel ufeful in medicine. 

The mizquitl, or mezquite, is a fpecies of true acacia, and the 
gum diftilling from it is faid to be the true gum arabic : it is a thorny 
flirub, with branches irregularly difpofed, the leaves fmall, thin, 
and pinnated; the flowers being like thofe of the birch tree: the 
fruits are fweet and eatable, containing a feed, of which the barba- 
rous Chichemecas were wont to make a kind of pafte that ferved 
them for bread. The wood is exceedingly hard and heavy, and the 
trees are as common in Mexico as oaks are in Europe, particularly 
on hills in the temperate countries. 

Of the elaftic gum, which is found in plenty in Mexico, the na- 
tives were in ufe to make foot-balls, which, though heavy, have a 
better fpring than thofe filled with air. At prefent they varnifti 
with it their hats, cloaks, boots and great coats, in a manner fimilar 
to what is done in Europe with wax, and by which means they arc 
rendered all water proof. ,- » 

Clavigero laments, that the natural hiftory of vegetables in 
Mexico is very httle known, and that of animals no better. TKe 
firft Spaniards, fays. he, who gave them names, were more Ikilful 
in the art of war than in the ftudy of nature. Infiead of retaining 
the terms which would have been moft proper, they denominated 
many animals tygers, wolves, bears, dogs, fquirrels, &c. although 
they were very different in kind, merely from fome refemblance ia 
the colour of their (kin, their figure, or fome fimilarity in habits 
and difpofition. The quadrupeds found in Mexico at the arrival oi: 
the Spaniards, were lions, tygers, wild cats, bears, wblves, foxes, 
the common flags, white ftags, bucks, wild goats, badgers, pole-cats, 
weafcis, martins, fquirrels, poiatucas, rabbits, hares, otters and rats. 
All thefe animals are fuppofed to be common to both continents. 
The white flag, whether it be the flime fpecies of the other or not, 
is undoubtedly common to both, and was known to the Greeks and 
Romans. The Mexicans call it " the king of the flags." M. Buffon 
imagrnes the white colour of this creature to be the efTeft of capti- 
vity ; but Clavigero fays, that it is found wild, and of the fame 
white colour, on the mountains of New-Spain. In many other 
points, he alfo controverts the opinions of this celebrated naturalifl, 
who will not allow the iion, tyger or rabbit, to be natives of America, 

iN z Th3 


The animals which are common to Mexico, with the other parts 
of the continent, are, the Mexican hog, the moufete, the opoffum, 
the armadillo, the techichi, a fmall animal refembling a dog, which 
being perfeftly dumb, gave occafion to a report, that the Mexican 
dogs could not bark. The flefh of this animal was eat by them, 
and was efteemed agreeable and nouriihing food. After the conqueft 
of Mexico, the Spaniards having neither large cattle nor flieep, pro- 
vided their markets with this quadruped, by which means the fpecies 
foon came to be extinft, though it had been very numerous. The 
land-fquirrel is very numerous in the kingdom of Michuacan, has 
great elegance of form, and is extremely graceful in its moveraeat ; 
but it cannot be tamed, and bites moft furioufly every perfon who 
. approaches it. 

Befides thefe, there are fea-lions, raccoons, and that voracious 
animal named the tapir. There are likewife great numbers of mon- 
keys of many different kinds, fome of which have heads refembling 
thofe of dogs ; fome of them are ftrong and fierce, equalling a man 
in ftaturewhen they ftand upright. 

Among the animals peculiar to Mexico, is one named by Cla- 
vigcro coyoto, which appears to have been inaccurately defcribed by 
natural hiftorians, fome making it one fpecies and fome another. The 
tlalcojotl, or tlalcoyoto, is about the fize of a middling dog, and in 
Clavigero's opinion, is the largeft animal that lives under the 
earth. The tepeizuintli, or mountain-dog, though it is but of 
the fize of a fmall dog, is fo bold that it attacks deer, and 
fometimes kills them. Another animal, larger than the two fore- 
going, is called the xoloitzcuintli ; fome of thefe are no lefs than 
four feet in length ; it has a face like the dog, but tufks like the 
wolf, with credi ears, the neck giofs, and the tail long : it is entirely 
dellitute of hair, except only the fnout, where there are fome thick 
crooked briftles : the whole body is covered with a fmooth, foft, afli- 
coloured Ikin, fpotted partly with black and tawny. This fpecies 
of animals, as well as the two former, are almoft totally extinft. A 
Lyncean academician, named Giovanni Fabri, has endeavoured to 
prove, that the xoloitzcuintli is the fame with the wolf of Mexico ; 
but this is denied by Clavigero. 

An animal called ocotochtii, a kind of wild cat, is remarkable 

more for the fabulous account of it, than for any Angular property 

with which it is really endowed. According to Dr. Hernandez, 

when this creature takes any prey, it covers it with leaves, and af- 

4 tervvards 


tcrwards mounting on fome neighbouring tree, it begins howling to 
invite other animals to eat its prey, being itfelf always the laft to 
eat, becaufe the poifon of its tongue is fo ftrong, that if it ate firft 
the prey would be infefted, and other animals which eat of it would 
die. To thefe muft be added a curious animal of the mole kind, 
which is called tozan, or tuza ; it is about the fize of an European 
mole, but very different otherwife.* 

The birds are fo numerous, and of fuqh various appearances and 
qualities, that Mexico has been called the country of birds as Africa 
is of quadrupeds. Though Hernandez pafles over a great number 
of fpecies, he yet defcribes above two hundred peculiar to the 
country. He allows to the eagles and hawks of Mexico a fuperiority 
over thofe of Europe ; and the falcons of this country were for- 
merly efteemed fo excellent, that, by tlie dcfire of Philip II. an 
hundred of them were fent every year over to Spain. The largeft, 
the moft beautiful, and the moft valuable kind of eagles is called 
by the ^lexicans itzquauhtli, and will purfue not only the larger 
kind of birds, but quadrupeds, and even men. 

The aquatic birds are very numerous and of great variety: there 
are at leaft twenty fpecies of ducks, a vaft number of geefe, with 
feveral kinds of herons, great number of fwans, quails, water-rails, 
divers, king's fifliers, pelicans, &c. The multitude of ducks is 
fometimes (o great, that they cover the fields, and appear at a dif- 
tance like flocks of fheep. Some of the herons and egrets are per- 
fe<ftly white, fome afli-coloured : others have the plumage of the 
body white, while the neck, with the tops and upper part of the 
wings, and part of the tail, are enlivened with a bright fcarlet, or 
beautiful blue. 

There are a great number of birds valuable on account of their 
plumage, which was made ufe of by the Mexicans in their excel- 
lent Mofaic works, an art which feems now to be totally loll. Pea- 
cocks have been carried from the old continent to Mexico ; but not 
being attended to, have propagated very llowly. The birds re- 
markable for their fong are likewife very numerous ; among which 
that called the centzonitl, by Europeans the mocking-bird, is the 
moft remarkable, on account of its counterfeiting naturally the notes 
of all others it hears. 

'if For a more j'artiiuhr accouat cf tbefc animjs fc: Hifary of Qi^ird iipeJs tn- 



Mexico, like all other American countries, abounds with reptiles, 
many of them of an enormous fize. The crocodiles are not lefs to 
be dreaded than thofe of Africa or Afia ; and there are likewife 
fome of thofe monftrous ferpents met with in the Eaft-Jndies and in 
South-America, though happily the fpecies of thofe terrible creatures 
feems to be nearly extincT', as they are feldom to be found but in 
fome folitary wood, or other remote place. There are great numbers 
of lizards, fome of which the people fuppofe to be poifonous ; but 
others think this opinion ill-founded. There are feveral kinds of 
poifonous ferpents, of which the rattie-fnake is one. The cenocoatl 
is another poifonous ferpent, and remarkable for having a luminous 
appearance in the dark ; by which, as by the rattle in the tail of the 
former, travellers are warned to avoid it. Among the harmlefs fnakes 
is a very beautiful one about a foot in length, and of the thicknefs 
of the little finger ; it appears to take great pleafure in the fociety 
of ants, infomuch that it will accompany thefe infefts upon their 
expeditions, and return with them to their ufualneft: it is called 
both by ihe Mexicans and Spaniards the " mother of the ants ;" but 
Clavigero fuppofes, that all the attachment which the fnake fliews to 
the ant-hills proceeds from its living on the ants themfelves. The 
ancient Mexicans were wont to take delight in keeping an harmlefs 
green fnake, which they catched in the fields, and which, when well 
fed, would grow to the length of five or fix feet. It was generally 
kept in a tub, which it never left but to receive food from the hand 
of its mafter ; and this it would take either mounted on his flioulder 
or coiled about his legs. 

The aquatic animals are innumerable. Clavigero mentions a 
fpecies of frogs fo large that a fingle one will weigh a pound, and 
which are excellent food. Of fifli proper for food, he fays, that he 
has counted upwards of one hundred Ipecies, without taking in the 
"turtle, crab, lobfter, or any other cruftaceous animal. 

Of flying and other minute infefts the number is prodigioufly 
great. There are a variety of beetles ; fome of a green colour make 
a great noife in flying, on which account children are fond of them. 
There are great numbers of fliining beetles, which make a delight- 
ful appearance at night, as well as the luminous flies which abound 
in the country. There are fix kinds of bees and four kinds of 
wafps ; of which lafi:, one collefts wax and honey of a very fweet 
tafte : another is called the wandering wafp, from its frequent change 
of abode ; and in confequencQ of thefe changes, it is conftantly em- 
ploy e4 


|jloyed in colleding materials for its habitations. There is aifo a 
black hornet with a red tail, the Iting of which is fo large and ftrong, 
that it will not only penetrate a iugar-cane, but even the trunk of a 
tree. The lake of Mexico abounds with a kind of fly, the Ci^gs of 
which are dcpofited upon the flags and ruflies in fiich quantities as 
to form Jarge mafles : thefe are coUefted by the fifliermen, and 
carried to market f<^r fale : they are eaten by both Mexicans and 
Spaniards, and hasx much the fame lafte as the caviare of fifli : the 
jVlexicans eat alfo the flies themlelves, ground and made up with falt- 
petre. There are abundance of gnats in the ir.oul; j/.'.ces and lakes, 
but the capital, though fituated upon a lake, is tntire'y fiee from 
them. There are other flics which make no noife in their flight, 
but caufe a violent itching by their bite, and if the part be icratched, 
an open wound is apt to enJue. The butterflies are in vaft num- 
bers, and their wings glow with colours far fuperior to thofe of 
Europe ; the figures of fome of them are given by Hernandez. But 
notwithftanding its beauties and advantages, Mexico is fubjeft to 
the dreadful devafiations of locufts, which fometimes occafion the 
moft deftruftive famines. 

There are fome of the worms of Mexico made ufe of by the in- 
habitants as food, others are poilbnous. There are great numbers 
of fcolopendrae and fcorpions, fome of the former growing to an 
immenfe fize. Hernandez fays, that he has feen fome of them two 
feet long and two inches thick. The fcorpions are very numerous, 
and in the hot parts of the country their poifon is fo ftrong as to kill 
children, and give terrible pain to adults. Their fl:ing is moft dan- 
gerous during thofe hours of the day in which the fun is hotteft. In 
the province of Michuacan is a Angular fpecies of ant, larger than: 
the common one, with a greyifli body and black head ; on its hinder 
part is a little bag full of a fvveet fubftance, of which children are 
very fend : the Mexicans fuppofe this to be a kind of honey collected 
by the infeiSt ; but Clavigero thinks it rather is its eggs. There is 
a mifchievous kind of tick, which in the hot countries abound* 
among the grafs : from thence it eafily gets upon the clothes, and 
from them upon the fkin ; there it fixes with iuch force, from the 
particular figure of its feet, that it can fcarcely be got off": at firft it 
feems nothing but a fmall black i'peck, but in a ftiort time enlarge* 
to fuch a degree, from the blood which it iucks, that it equals the 
fize of a bean, and then aflumes a leaden colour. Oviedo fays, 
lijat the bell and fafeil method of getting fpcedily rid of it is by 



anointing the part with oil, and then fcraping it with aknifc. If it is 
not Ipeedily removed, a wound is made fimilar to that which the ni- 
gera or chegoe makes. The following infefts were eaten by the an- 
cient Mexicans: i. The atelepitz, a marfh beetle, refembling in 
fliape and (ize the flying beetles, having four feet, and covered with 
a haid fliell. 2. The atopinan, a marfti grafshopper of a dark co- 
lour and great fize, being not lefs than fix inches long and two broad. 
3. The ahuihuitla, a wornn which inhabits the Mexican lake, four 
inches long, and of the thicknefs of a goofe quill, of a tawny co- 
lour on the upper part of the body, and white upon the under part ; 
it flings with its tail, which is hard and poifonous. 4. The ocui- 
liztac, a black marfh -worm, which becomes white on being roafted. 

Among the curious produftions of the animal kind to be met 
with in this country, Clavigero mentions a kind of zoophytes, 
which he faw in the year 1751, in a houfe in the country, about 
ten miles from Angclopoli, towards the fouth-eaft : they were three 
or four inches long, and had four very flender feet, with two aii- 
lennse ; but their body was nothing more than the fibres of the 
leaves, of the fame fliape, fize and colour, with thofe of the other 
leaves of the trees upon which thefe creatures were found. Ge- 
melli defcribes another kind of thefe zoophytes which are found in 

Mexico produces alfo filk-worms j and the manufa6lure of filk 
might be carried on to great advantage, were it not prohibited 
for fome political reafons. Befides the common filk, there is 
another found in the woods, very white, foft and ftrong. It grows 
on the trees in feveral maritime places, particularly in dry feafons : 
unlefs by poor people, however, this filk is not turned to any ufe, 
partly from inattention to their interefls, but " chiefly" fiiys Clavi- 
gero, " to the obllruflions which would be thrown in the way of 
any one who fhould attempt a trade of that kind. We know from 
Cortes's letters to Charles V. that filk ul'ed to be fold in the Mexican 
markets: and fome piftures are flill preferved, done by the ancient 
Mexicans upon a paper made of filk." 

Cochineal is one of the moft valuable produces of Mexico, and 
great care is taken to rear the infeft in different parts ; but the 
befi: is that which comes from the province of Mizteca : fome have 
reckoned, that more than two thoufand five hundred bags of cochi- 
neal are fcnt every year from Mizteca to Spain ; and the tracl,c in 



that article carried on by the city of Oaxaca is computed at two hun- 
dred thoufand crewns value. 

Though Mexico was originally inhabited by a number of different 
nations, yet all of them refembled each other pretty much, not only 
in charafter, but in external appearance. " They generally rather 
exceed," fays Clavigero, " than fall under the middle fize, and are 
well-proportioned in all their limbs : they have good complexions, 
rarrow foreheads, black eyes, clean, firm, white and regular teeth ; 
thick, black, coarfe, gloiryhair; thin beards, and generally no hair 
upon their legs, thighs and arms, their (kin being of ah olive co- 
lour. There is fcarcely a nation on earth in v/hich there are fewer 
perfons deformed : and it would be more difficult to find a fingle 
hump-backed, lame or fquint-eyed man among a thoufand Mexicans, 
than among an hundred of any other nation. The nnpleafantnefs of 
their colour, the fmallnefs of tl:;.ir foreheads, the thlnnefs of their 
beards, and the coarfenefs of their hair, are fo far compenfated by 
the regularity and fine proportion of their limbs, that they can 
neither be called very beautiful nor the contrary, but fccm to hold 
a middle place between the extremes : their appearance neither en- 
gages nor difgufts; but among the young women of Mexico there 
are many very beautiful and fair, whofe beauty is at the fime time 
rendered more winning by the natural fweetnefs of thfeir rrianner of 
fpeaking, and by the pleafantnefs and natural modefty of their whole 
behaviour. Their fenfes are very acute, efpecially that of fighf,' 
which they enjoy unimpaired to the lateft age. Their conftitutions 
are found and their health robuft : they are entirely free of many 
diforders which are common among the Spaniards ; but of the epi- 
demical difeafes to which their country is occafionally fubjeft they 
are generally the victims : with them thefe difeafes begin, and with 
them they end. One never perceives in a Mexican that ftinking 
breath which is occafioned in other people by the corruption of the 
humours or indigeftion : their conllitutions are phlegmatic ; but the 
pituitous evacuations from their heads are very fcanty, and they fel- 
dom fpit. They become grey-headed and bald earlier than the 
Spaniards ; and although nioft of them die of acute difeafes, it is 
not very uncommon among them to attain the age of an hundred. 
They are now, and ever liave been, moderate in eating, but their 
paflion for flrong liquors is carried to the grcatelt excefs : formerly 
they were kept within bounds by the fevcrity of the laws, bet now 
that thefe liquors are become fo common, and druiikenncfs is un- 

VoL. IV. O • puniflied^ 


puniftied, one-half of the people feem to have loll their fenfes ; and 
this, together with the poor manner in which they live, expofed to 
all the baneful imprefllons of difeafe, and dcllitute of the means of 
corredling them, is undoubtedly the principal caufe of the havoc 
which is made among them by epidemical diforders. 

" Many perfons allow the Mexicans to pofiefs a great talent 
of imitation, but deny them that of invention ; a vulgar error, 
which is contradided by the ancient hiflory of that people. Their 
minds are afFefted by the fame variety of paffions with thofe of other 
nations, but not to an equal degree ; the Mexicans feldom exhibit 
thofe tranfports of anger, or frenzies of love, which are fo commoa 
in other countries. They are flow in then- motions, and fliew a 
wonderful tenacity and fteadinefs in thofe v/orks which recjuire time 
and long-continued attention. They are moft patient of injury and 
hardfliip, and where they fufpeft no evil intention, are moft grate- 
ful for any kindnefs fliewn : but fome Spaniards, who cannot dif- 
tinguifli patience from infenfibility, nor diftruft from ingratitude, 
fay proverbially, that the Indians are alike infenfible to injuries or 
benefits. That habitual diftrufl which th^ entertain of all who are 
not of their nation, prompts them often to lye and betray ; fo that 
good faith certamly has not been refpeded among them fo much as 
it deferiTs. They are by nature taciturn, ferious and auftere, and 
ilievv more anxiety to punifti crimes than to reward virtue. 

" Generofity and perfect difmtereftednefs are the principal fea- 
tures of their character. Gold, v.'ith the Mexicans, has not that 
value which it enjoys elfewhere. They feem to give without re- 
]u6tance what has cofl them the utmoft labour to acquire. The 
negleft of felfifli interefts, with the diflike which they bear to their 
rulers, and confequent'y their averfion to perform the tafks impofed 
hy them, feem to have been the only grounds of that much exag- 
gerated indolence with which the Americans have been charged ; 
and, after all, there is no fet of people in that country who labour 
more, or whofe labour is more neceflary. The refpeft paid by the 
young people to the old, and by children to their parents, feem to 
be ftelijigs that are born with them. Parents are very fond of their 
children ; but the affection which hufbands bear to their wives is 
certainly Icfs than that which wives bear to their hulhands; and it ij 
very common for the men to love their neighbour's wives better tham 
Jheif own. 

e f* Courage 


*' Courage and cowardice feem alternately fo to afFc<^ their minds, 
that it is often difficult to determine whether the one or the other 
predominates : they meet dangers with intrepidity when they proceed 
from natural cauies, but are eafily terrified by the ftern look of a 
Spaniard. That flupid iadifterence about death and eternity, which 
many authors have thought inherent in the character of every Ame- 
rican, is peculiar only to thofe who are yet fo rude and uninformed 
as to have no idea of a future ftate." 

Thus much with refpeft to the general chara<^er of the Mexi- 
cans ; but Clavigero obferves, that " the modern Mexicans are not 
in all refpe6ts fimilar to ,thc ancient, as the Greeks of thefe days 
have little refemblance to thofe who lived in the times of Plato and 
Pericles. The ancient Mexicans fliev/ed more fire, and were more 
ienfible to the impreffions of honour ; they were more intrepid, 
more nimble, more aftive, more induftrious ; but they were at the 
fame time more fuperftitious and cruel." 

The principal inhabitants of Mexico, in modern times, are Spa- 
niards fent thither by the court, to fill the polls of government. 
They are obliged, like thofe in the mother country who afpire to 
any ecclefiaflical, civil or military employments, to prove, that there 
have been neither heretics, Jews, Mahommedans, nor any perfon 
in their family who have been called before the inquifitjon for four 
generations. Merchants who are defirous of going to Mexico, as 
well as to other parts of America, without becoming colonifls, are 
compelled to obferve the fame forms : they are alfo obliged to fwear 
that they have three hundred palms of merchandife, their own pro- 
perty, in the fleet in which they embark, and that they will not 
carry their wives with them. On thefe abfurd conditions they be- 
come the principal agents of the European commerce with the In- 
dies. Though their charter is only to continue three years, and a 
little longer for countries more remote, it is of great importance. 
To them alone belongs the right of felling, as commiffioncrs, the 
major part of the cargo. If thefe laws were obferved, the mer- 
chants ftationed in the new world would be confined to difpofe of 
what they have received on their own account. 

The predi!e61ion which the admiiniftration has for Spaniards born 
io Europe, has reduced the Spaniih Creoles to acquiefce in fubordi- 
nate llations. The defcendants of the companions of Cortes, and 
of thofe who came after them, being conftantly excluded from all 
places of honour or of truft that were any way confiderable, have feen 

O z the 


the gradual decay of the power that fupported their fathers. The habit 
of being obliged to bear that unjuft contempt with which they have 
been treated, has at laft made them become really Gontemptible. They 
have totally loft, in the vices which originate from indolence, from 
the heat of the climate, and from a fiiperfluous enjoyment of all 
things, that firmnefs and that fort of pride which have ever charac- 
terifcd their nation. A barbarous luxury, fhameful pleafures, and 
romantic intrigues, have enervated all the vigour of their minds, and 
fuperftition hath completed the ruin of their virtues. Blindly de- 
voted to priefts too ignorant to enlighten them by their inilrudions, 
too depraved to edify them by their example, and too mercenary to 
attend to both thefe duties of their fundion, they have no attach- 
ment to any part of their religion but that which enfeebles the mind, 
and have neglecSted what might have contributed to reftify their 

The Meftees, who conftitute the third order of citizens, are heid 
in ftill greater contempt. It is well known that the court of Ma- 
drid, in order to replenilli a part of that dreadful vacancy which the 
nvarice and cruelty of the conquerors had occafioned, and to regain 
the confidence of thofe who had efcaped their fury, encouraged as 
much as poffible the marriage of Spaniards with Indian women : 
thefe alliances, which became pretty common throughout all Ame- 
rica, were particularly frequent in Mexico, where the women had 
more underilanding and were more agreeable than in other places. 
The Creoles transferred to this mixed progeny the contemptuous 
flight they received from the Europeans. Their condition, equivo- . 
cal at firft, in procels of time was fixed between the whites and the 

Thefe blacks are not very numerous in Mexico. As the natives are 
more intelligent, more robiift and more induftrious, than thofe of 
the other colonics, they have hardly introduced any Africans except 
fuch as v.ere required either to indu'lge the caprice, or perform the 
tlomcflic iervice, of rich people. Thefe flaves, who are much be- 
loved by their mafters, on whom they abfolutely depend, who pur- 
chafed them at an extravagant price, and who make them the mi- 
niAers of their pleafures, take advantage of the high favour they 
enjoy to oppreis the Mexicans : they aluime over thefe men, who 
are called frcc^ an afcendancy which keeps up an implacable hatred 
between the two nations. The law has fludied to encourage this 
averfion, by taking efFeftual meafures to prevent all connexion be- 


tween them. Negroes are prohibited from having any amorous cor- 
relpondence with the Indians ; the men, on pain of being mutilated j 
the women, of being feverely puniihed. On all thefe accounts, the 
Africans, who in other fettlements are enemies to Europeans, are ia 
the Spanifli Indies their warm friends. 

Authority has no need of this fupport, at leaft in Mexico, where 
population is no longer what it was formerly. The lirft hiftorians, 
and thofe who copied them, have recorded, that the Spaniards 
found there ten millions of fouls. This is fuppofed to have been 
the exaggerated account of conquerors, to exalt the magnificence 
of their triumph ; and it was adopted, without examination, with 
fo much the more readinefs, as it rendered them the more odious. 
We need only trace with attention the progrefs of thofe rufHans who 
at firfl: defolated thefe fine countries, in order to be convinced that 
they had not fucceeded in multiplying men at Mexico and the ad- 
jacent parts, but by depopulating the center of the empire ; and 
that the provinces which are remote from the capital, differed in 
nothing from the other deferts of South and North-America. It is 
making a great concefiion, to allow that the population of Mexico 
has only been exaggerated one-half, for it does not now much ex- 
teed two millions. 

It is generally believed, that the firfl conquerors maffacred the 
Indians out of wantonnefs, and that even the priells incited thera 
to thefe a6ts of ferocity. Undoubtedly thefe inhuman foldiers fre- 
•quently (lied blood without even an apparent motive ; and certainly 
their fanatic miffionaries did not oppofe thefe barbarities as thej- 
ought to have done. This was not, however, the real caufe, the 
principal fource of the depopulation of Mexico ; it was the work of 
a flow tyranny, and of that avarice which exafted from its wretched 
inhabitants more rigorous toil than was compatible with their cou- 
ilitution and the climate. 

This oppreffion was coeval with the conqueft of the country. All 
the lands were divided between the crown, the companions of Cortes, 
and the grandees or minifters who were i-noft in favour at the court 
of Spain. The Mexicans, appointed to the royal domains, were 
deftined to public labours, v/hich originally were confiderable. The 
lot of thofe who were employed on the eflates of individuals was 
Hill more wretched : all groaned under a dreadful yoke ; they were 
iil fed, they had no wages given them, and fervices were required 


of them, under which the moft robuft men would have funk : their 
misfortunes excited the compaflion of Bartholomew de las Cafas, 

This man, fo famous in the annals of the new world, had accon>. 
panied his father in the firll voyage made by Columbus. The mild* 
nefs and fimplicity of the Indians affefted him fo ftrongly, that he 
luade bimfelf an ecclefiaftic, in order to devote his labours to their 
converfion ; but this foon became the leaft of his attention. As he 
was more a man than a prieft, he felt more for the cruelties exercifed 
againft them than for their fiiperfiitions. He was continually hurry- 
ing from one hemifphere to the other, in order to comfort the people 
for whom be bad conceived an attachment, or to foften their tyrants. 
This conduct, which made him idolized by the one, and dreaded by 
the other, had not the fuccefs he expecfled. The hope of ftriking awe, 
by a charafter revered among the vSpaniards, deterrrvined him to ac- 
cept the biniopiic of Chiapa in Mexico, When he was convinced 
that this dignity was an iniufficient barrier againft that avarice and 
cruelty which he endeavoured to check, he abdicated it. It was thea 
that this courageous, firm, difinterefted man, sccufed his country 
before the tribunal of the whole univerfe. In his account of the ty- 
ranny of the Spaniards in America, be accufes them of having de- 
f^royed fifteen millions of the Indians. *They ventured to iind fauk 
with the acrimony of his ftile, but no one convicted him of exaggera- 
tion. His writings, which indicate the amiable turn of his difpoli- 
tion, and the fublimity of his fcntiments, have llamped a difgrace 
■upon his barbarous countrymen, which time hath iwt, nor never m\\ 

The court of Madrid, awakened by the reprefentations of the vir- 
tuous Las Cafas, and by the indignation of the whole world, became 
■J^ifible at laft, that the tyranny it j>ermitted was repugnant to re- 
ligion, to humanity, and to policy, and refolved to break the chains 
«f the Mexicans. Their liberty v/as now only confirained by the folc 
condition, that they fliould not qmi the territory where they were 
fettled. This precaution owed its origip to the fear that was enter- 
tained of their going to join the wanderir^g favages to the north and 
fouth of the en;pire. 

With their liberty their lands ought alfo to have been refiored to 
them, bvu this was not done. This injuftice compelled theni to work 
folely for their oppreflbrs. It was only decreed, that the Spaniard?, 
m whofe fervice they laboured, fliould ftipulatc to keep them well, 
and pay them to the amount oi iive poujids fivelliilUixgs a year. 



From thefe profits the tribute impofed by government was fub- 
traded, together with four fliillings and four-pence half-penny for 
an inftitution, which is ailonifliing the conquerors fliould have 
thought «f eftabhflung. This was a fund fet apart in each commu- 
nity, and appropriated to the relief of fuch Indians as were decayed 
or indifpofed, and to their fiipport under private or public cala- 

The diftribution of this fund was committed to their caciques. 
Thefe were not the defcendants of thofe whom they found in the 
country at the time of the conqucft. The Spaniards chofe them 
from among thofe Indians who appeared the moll attached to their 
interefts, and were under no apprehenfion at making thefe dignities 
hereditar}'. Their authority was limited to the fupporting the 
police in their diftrift, which in general extended eight or te^ 
leagues, to the coUce'ting the tribute of thofe Indians who la- 
boured on their own account, that of the others being flopt by the 
matters whom they ferved, and to the preventing their flight by 
keeping them always under their infpe6tion, and not fuffering them 
to contrad: any engagement without their confent. As a reward of 
their fervices, thefe magiftrates obtained from government a pro- 
perty. They were permitted to take out of the common flock two- 
pence half-penny annually, for everj' Indian under their jurifdidion. 
At laft they were empowered to get their fields cultivated by fuch 
young men as were not yet fubjed to the~poll tax; and to employ 
girls till the time of their marriage, in fuch occupations as were 
adapted to their fex, without allowing them any falary except their 

Thefe inftilutions, which totally changed the condition of the 
Indians in ^Mexico, irritated the Spaniards to a degree not to be- 
conceived. Their pride would n«t fuffer them to conlidei- the Ame- 
ricans as free men, nor would their avarice permit them to pay for 
-labour which hitherto had cofi: them nothing. They emi)loyed them- 
felves fucceflively, or in combination, craft, remonllrances, and vio- 
lence, to efle6l the fubverfion of an arrangement which fo ilrongly 
tontradided their warmeft paffions ; but their efforts were ineffec- 
tual. Las Cafas had raifed up for his beloved Indians protedlors who 
fcconded his defign with zeal and warmth. The Mexicans themfelves 
finding a fupport, impeached their opprefTors before the tribunals, 
and even the tribunals that were either weak or in the intereft of 
the court. They cariixl their refo!ution fo far, as even u nan imoii fly 



to refufe fro work for thole x\'ho had treated any of their countryraerl 
with injuftice. This mutual agreement, more than any other cir- 
cumftance, gave folidity to the regulations which had been decreed : 
the other, prefcribed by the laws, was gradually eftablilhed. There 
ttas no longer any regular fyftem of oppreflion, but merely feveral 
of thofe particular vexations which a vanquifned people, who 
have loll their government, can hardly avoid from thofe who have 
fubue d it. 

Thefe clandeftine afts of injuftice did not prevent the Mexicans 
from recovering, from time to time, certain detached portions of that 
immenfe territory of which their fathers had been defpoiled. They 
purchafed them of the royal domain, or of the great proprietors. It 
was not their labour which enabled them to make thefe acquifitions j 
for this they were indebted to the happinefs of having difcovered, 
fome of them, mines, others, treafuies, which had been con- 
cealed at the time of the conqueil. The greateft number derived 
their refources from the prieils and monks, to whom they owed their 

Even thofe who experienced a fortune lefs propitious, procured 
for themfelves, by the fole profits of their pay, more convenience 
than they had enjoyed before they nnderwent a foreign yoke. We 
faould be very much deceived if we fliould judge of the ancient prof- 
pcrity of the inhabitants of Mexico by what has been faid by different 
writers of its emperor, its court, its capital, and the governors of its 
provinces. Defpotifm had there produced thofe fatal efFedts which it 
produces every where. The whole ftate was facrificed to the ca- 
prices, pleafures, and magnificence, of a fmall number of perfons. 

The government drew conliderable advantages from the mines 
which it caufed to be worked, and flill greater from thofe which were 
in the hands of individuals. The fait works greatly added to its re- 
venue. Thofe who followed agriculture, at the time of harveft paid 
a kind of a third of all the produce of the lands, whether they be- 
longed to them as their own property, or whether they were only the 
farmers of them. Men who lived by the chace, fifliermen, pot^ 
tcrs, and all mechanics, paid the fame proportion of their induftry 
' ..every month. Even the poor were taxed at certain fixed contribu- 
tions, which their labour or their alms might put them in a condition 
to pay. 

The Mexicans are now lefs imhappy ; European fruits, corn and 
cattle, have rendere.l their food more wholefome, agreeable, and 



abundant. Their houfes are better built, better difpofed, and 
better furnlflied. Shoes, drawers, fliirts, a garment of wool or cot- 
ton, a ruff, and a hat, conftitutc their drefs. The dignity which it 
has been agreed to annex to tliefe enjoyments, has made them better 
economifts, and more laborious. This cafe, however, is far from 
being Tiniverfal ; it is even very uncommon in the vicinity of the 
mines, towns, and great roads, where tyranny feldom fleeps : but we 
often find it with latista6iion in remote parts, where the Spaniards 
are not numerous, and where they have in fome meafure become 

The employments of this people are very various ; the mofl: intel- 
ligent, and thofe who are in eafy circumftances, devote themfelvcs to 
the moft necefTary and moll: ufcful manufa(flures, which are dif- 
perfed through the whole empire. The moft beautiful manufac- 
tures are eflabliflied among the people of Tlafcal ; their old capital, 
and the new one, which is called Angelos, are the center of this in- 
duftry ; here they manufafture cloth that is pretty fine, calicoes 
that have an agreeable appearance, certain flight filks, good 
hats, gold lace, embroidery, lace, glalfes, and a great deal of h.:rd- 

The care of flocks affords a maintenance to fome Mexicans, whom 
fortune or nature have not called to more diftinguiflied employments. 
America, at the time it was diicovered, had neither hogs, flieep, 
oxen, horfes, nor even any domeftic animal. Columbus carried 
fome of thefe ufeful animals to St. Domingo, from whence they were 
generally difperfed, and at Mexico more than any other place : thefe 
have multiplied prodigioufly. They count their horned cattle by 
thoufands, whofe fkins are become an objeft of confiderable expor- 
tation. The horfes are degenerated, but the quality is compenfated 
Uy the number. Hog's lard is here iiibftituted for butter. Sheep's 
wool is dry, coarfe, and bad, as it is every where between the 

The vine and olive tree have experienced the fame degeneracy ; 
the cultivation of them was at firll prohibited, with a view of leav- 
ing a free market for the commodities of the mother country. In 
1706, permiffion was given to the Jefuit?, and a little afterwards to 
the Marquis Del Valle, a defcendant from Cortes, to cultivate 
them : the attempts have not proved fuccefsful. The trials, indeed, 
that have been made, have not been abandoned, but no perion has 
folirited the liberty of following an cxamp'e which did not ^)rom;fe 

Vol. IV. P any 


any great emoluments. Other cultures have been more fuccefsful ; 
cotton, Aigar, filk, cocoa, tobacco, and European corn, have all 
.thriven in fome degree. The Spaniards are encouraged to profecute 
the labours which thefe cultures require, from the happy circumftancc 
of their having difcovered iron mines, which were entirely unknown 
to the jNIexicans, as well as fome mines of a kind of copper that is 
hard enough to ferve for implcmcKts of hulbandry ; all thefe articles, 
however, for want of men and induftry, are merely confumed within 
the country. There is only the vanilla, indigo, and cochineal, which, 
make a part of the trade of Mexico with other nations. 

N E VV - M E X I C O. 

New-Mexico is fo called, becaufe of its being difcovered later than 
Old-Mexico J is bounded on the north by high mountains, beyond 
which is a country altogether unknown j by Louifiana on the eaft ; 
by New-Spain on the fouth ; and on the weft by the gulph of Cali- 
fornia, and the Rio Colorado; extending, it is faid, above one hun- 
dred miles from eaft to weft, and about nine hundred from fouth to 
north J but the twentieth part of the country within thefe limits is 
neither cultivated nor inhabited, either by Spaniards or Indians. As 
it lies in the midft of the temperate zone, the climate, in general, 
is very pleafant ; the fummers, though very warm, are neither 
fultry nor unwholefome ; and the winters, though pretty ftiarp, 
are far from being infupportable, and, for the moft part, clear and 

The greateft encomiums are laviflied on the fertility of the foil, 
the richnefs of the mines, and the variety of valuable commoditiei 
produced in this country. It is faid to be beautifully diverftfied with 
fields, meadows, rifing grounds, and rivers ; abounding with fruit 
and timber trees, turquoifes, emeralds, and other precious ftone.% 
mines of gold and filver, a great variety of wild and tame cattle, fifli 
and fowls. Upon the whole, we may fafely aflnrm, that New-Mexico 
ij among the pleaianteft, richeft, and moft plentiful countiies in 
America, or any other part of the world. There are few great or 
navigable rrs'ers in it: the moft confiderable are, the Rio Solado, and 
Rio del Norte, which, with feveral fniallcr ftreams, fall into the 
gulph of Mexico. On the coaft of the gulph are divers bays, ports, 
and creeks, which mij^ht be eafily converted into excellent harbours, 
if the Spaniards were pofillled of any portion of that commercial fpirit 
W'hith animates the other maritime nations of Europe. 


The Spanifli writers tell us, that New-Mexico is inhabited by a 
great variety of Indian nations or tribes, totally unconncfted with 
each other ; but the principal are the Apaches, n brave, warlike, rc- 
folnte people, fond of liberty, and the inveterate enemies of tyranny 
and opprelTion. About the clofe of the laft century, thinking them- 
felves aggrieved by the Spanifli government, they made a general, 
infurredion, and did a great deal of mifchief, but were at laft obliged 
to fubmit, and have fince been curbed by flronger garrifons. JNIoft 
of the natives are now Chriftians. When the Spaniards fiift entered, 
this country, they found the natives well clothed, their lands culti- 
vated, their villages neat, and their houfes buiit with ftone. Their 
flocks alfo were numerous, and they lived more comfortably thaa 
moft of the other favages of America. As to religion, they were 
idolaters, aad vvorfliipped the fun and moon ; but whether they of- 
fered human facrifices, we are not fufiiciently informed. 

As to the number of the provinces of this country, we can advance 
nothing certain ; fome writers making them only five, others ten, 
fifteen, twenty, and twenty-five, but adding no defcription, either of 
them, or the towns contained in them, excepting the capital, Santa 
Fe, which we are told Hands near the fource of the Rio del Norte, 
in 36° north latitude, and about one hundred and thirty leagues from 
the gulph ; that it is a well-built, handfome, rich town, and the kat 
of the bifliop, fufFragan of Mexico, as well as the governor of 
the province, who is fubordinate to the viceroy of Mexico, or New- 


California is the moil northerly of all the Spanifli dominions on the 
continent of i\.merica, is fometlmes dlftinguiftied by the name of 
New-Albion, and the Iflas Carabiras ; but the mofl ancient appella- 
tion is California, a word probably owing to fome, accident, or to 
fome words fpoken by the Indians and mifunderftood by the Spa- 
niards. For a long time California was thought to be an ifland, but 
Father Caino, a German Jefuit, difcovered it to be a peninlula join- 
ing to the coaft of New-Mexico, and the fouthern parts of America. 
This peninfula extends from Cape St. Sebaftian, lying in north lati- 
tude 43'' 30', to Cape St. Lucar, which lies in north latitude 22° 32'. 
It is divided from New-Mexico by the gulph, or, as fome call it, the 
lake of California, or Vermillion fea, on the eaft ; on the north, by 
that part of the continent of North-America which is lead known ; and 
on the weft and fouth, by the Pacific ocean or great South fea. The 

P a coafts. 


coafls, efpecially towards the Vermillion fea, are covered with inha- 
bited iflands, on feme of which the Jefuits have eftablifiied fettle- 
nients, fuch as St. Clement, Paxaros, St. Anne, Cedars, fo called 
from the great number of thefe trees it produces, St. Jofeph, and a 
multitude of others. But the iflands beft known, ivc three lying off 
cape St. Lucar, towards the jNIezican coaft. Thefe are called Les 
Tres Marias, " the three Maries." They are but fmall, have good 
wood and water, fait pits, and abundance of game ; theiefore the 
Englifli and French pirates have fometimes wintered there, when 
bound on cruizes in the South Seas. 

As California lies altogether within the temperate zone, the na- 
tives are neither chilled with cold, nor fcorched with heat; and, in- 
deed, the improvements in agriculture made by the Jefuits, afford 
fcrong proofs of the excellency of the climate. In forne places the 
air is extremely hot and dry, and the earth wild, rugged, and bar- 
ren. In a country flretching about eight hundred miles in length, 
there mnfl be a confiJerable variation of foil and climate ; and, in- 
deed, we find, from good authority, that California produces fome 
of the mofi: beautiful lawns, as well as many of the mofi: inhofpitable 
deflnts in the univerfe. Upon the whole, although California is ra- 
ther rough and craggy, we are affured by the Jefuit Vinegas, and 
other good writers, that with due culture, it furniflies every necef- 
fary and conveniency of life ; and that even where the atmofphere is 
hottell, vapours rifing from the fea, and difperfed by pleafant 
breezes, render it of a moderate temperature. 

The peninfula of California is now flocked with all forts of domeftic 
animals known in Spain and Mexico. Ilorfes, mules, afles, oxen, 
fheep, hogs, g'^ats, and all other quadrupeds imported, thrive and 
increafe in this country. Among the native animals is a fpecies of 
deer, of the fize of a young heifer, a,nd greatly refembling it in fliape ; 
the head is like that of a deer, and the horns thick and crooked like 
thofe of a ram. The hoof of the animal is large, round, and cloven, 
the flvin fpotted, but the hair thinner, and the tail fliarper than thofe 
of a deer. Its flefli is greatly efiieemed. There is another animal 
peculiar to this country, larger and more btilky than a flicep, but 
greatly refembling it in figure, and, like it, covered with a fine black 
or white wool. The flcfli of this animal is nourifhing and delicious, 
and, happily for the natives, is fo abundant, that nothing more is re- 
quired than the trouble of hunting, as thefe animals wander about 
in droves in the forefts and on the mountains. Father Torquemado 



defcribes a creature which he calls a. fpecies of large bear, foinethin^ 
like a buffalo, of the fize of a ftecr, and nearly of the figure of a ftag; 
its hair is a quarter of a yard in length, its neck long and aukward, 
and on its forehead are horns branched like thofe of a flag. The tail 
is a yard in length, and half a yard in breadth, and the hoofs cloven 
like thofe of an ox. With regard to birds, we have but an iniperfedl 
account; only, in general, Father Venegas tells us, that the coafl is 
plentifully ftcred with peacocks, buftards, geefe, cranes, and moft 
of the birds common in other parts of the world. The quantity of 
filli which rtfort to thefe coafts are incredible. Salmon, turbot, 
barbel, fkate, mackerel, Sec. are caught here with very little trouble; 
together with pearl oyfters, common oyftcrs, lobfler?, and a variety 
of exquifife fliell fifli. Plenty of turtle are alfo caught on the coafts. 
On the South fea coafts are Ibtne fliell fifli peculiar to it, and perhaps 
the moft beautiful in the world ; their luftre furpaffing that of the 
fineft pearl, and darting their rays throtigh a tranfparent varnifti of 
an elegant vivid blue, like the lapis lazuli. The fame of California 
for pearls foon drew forth great numbers of adventurers, who fearched 
every part of the gulph, and are ftill employed in that work, not- 
withftanding fafliion has greatly diminiflied the value of this elegant 
natural produftion. Father Torquemado obferves, that the fea of 
California aftbrds very rich pearl fiflieries, and that the hoftias, or 
beds of oyflers, may be feen in three or four fathoms water, alinoft as 
plain as if they were on the furface. 

The extremity of the peninfula towards cape St. Lucar is more 
level, temperate, and fertile than the other parts, and confequently 
more woody. In the more diftant parts, even to the farthcft milTions 
on the eaft coaft, no large timber hath yet been difcovered. A 
fpecies of manna is found in this country, which, according to 
the accounts of the Jefuits, has all the fweetnefsi of refined fugar 
without its whitenefs. The natives firmly believe that the juice drops 
from heaven. 

The Californians are well made, and very ftrong ; they are ex- 
tremely pufillanimous, inconftant, ftup^d, and even infenfible, and 
feem deferving of the chara6ler given to the Indians in general. Be- 
fore the Europeans penetrated into California, the natives had no 
form of religion. The miffionaries, indeed, tell u$ many tales con- 
cerning them, but they fo evidently bear the marks of forgery, as 
not to be worth repeating. Each nation was then an alfemlilage of 
feveral cottages more or lels numerous, that were all mutually confe- 


derated by allinnces, but without any chief. They were Grangers 
even to filial obedience. No kind of drefs was ufed by the men, but 
the women made ufe of fome covering, and weie even fond of orna- 
menting themfelves with pearls and fuch other trinkets as the country 
afforded. What moltly difplayed their ingenuity was the conftruc- 
tioii of- their fifliing nets, which are faid by the Jefuits to have even 
exceeded in goodnefs thofe made in Europe ; they were made by 
the women, of a coarfe kind of flax procured from lome plants which 
grow there. Their houfes were built of branches and leaves of trees i 
nay, many of them were only inclofures of earth and ftone, raifed 
half a yard high, without any covering, and even thefe were fo fmall,. 
that they could not ftretch themfelves at length in them. In winter 
they dwelt under ground, in caves either natural or artificial. 

In 1526, Ferdinand Coites having reduced and fettled Mexico, 
attempted the conquefl of California, but was obliged to return^^ 
without even taking a furvey of the country, a report of his death 
having difpofed the Mexicans to general infurreftion. Some other 
attempts were made by the officers of Cortes, but thefe were alfo iin- 
fuccefsful, and this valuable coafl was long neglefted by the Spani- 
ards, who, to this day, have but one fettleraent upon it. In 1595, 
a galleon was fent to make difcoveries on the Californian fliore, but 
the vefTel was unfortunately lofl. Seven years after, the Count de 
Monteroy, then viceroy of New-Spain, fent Sebaflian Bifcayno on 
the fame defign with two fliips and a tender, but he made no difco- 
very of importance. In 1684, the Marquis de Laguna, alfo viceroy 
of New-Spain, difpatched two (hips with a tender to make difcove- 
ries on the lake of California ; he returned with an indifferent ac- 
count, but was among the firft that afferted that California was not; 
an ifiand, which was afterwards confirmed by Father Caino, as al- 
ready related. In 1697, the Spaniards being difcourag&d by their 
loflcs and difappointincnts, the Jefuits folicited and obtained permif- 
fion to undertake the conquefl of California. They arrived among 
the favagcs with curiofities that might amufe them, corn for their 
food, and clothes for which they could not but perceive the neceffity. 
The hatred thefe pco})le bore the Spanifli name, could not fupport 
itfelf againft thefe deinonftrations of benevolence. They teftified their 
acknowledgments as much as their want of fenhbiiity and their in- 
conftancy would permit tlicm. Thefe faults were partly overcome by 
the religious inftitutors, who purfued their projed with a degree of 
warmth nnd rcibluLiou peculiar to the focicty. They made them- 
2, felves 


fclves carpenters, mafons, weavers, and hulbandmen ; and by thefo 
means fucceeded in imparting knowledge, and in Ibme meafure a 
tafte for the ufeful arts, to this lavage people, who have been all fuc- 
celTively formed info one body. In 1745, they compofed forty-three 
villages, feparated from each other by the barreniiefs of the foil and 
the want of water. The inhabitants of thefe fmall villages fublilt 
principally on com and pulfe, which they cultivate, and on the fruits 
and domeftic animals of Europe, the breeding of which laif is an ob- 
jcft of continual attention. The Indians have each their field, and 
the property of what they reap ; but fuch is their want of forefighr, 
that they would fquander in a day what they had gathered, if the 
miffionary did not take upon himfelf to diftribute it to them as they 
ftood in need of it. They manufafture fome coarfe fluffs, and the 
neceflaries they are in want of are purchafed with pearls, and with wine 
nearly refembling that of Madeira, which they fell to the Mexic;ins 
and to the galleons, and which experience hath fliown the neceffity 
of prohibiting in California. A few laws, which are very liraplc, 
are fufficicnt to regulate this rifing ilate. In order to inforce them, 
the miflionary chooles the moft intelligent perfon of the vilkige, who 
is empowered to whip and imprifon, the only punifiiments of which 
they have any knowledge. In all California, there are only two garrl- 
fons, each confifiing of thirty men, and a foklier with"every miflionary; 
thefe troops were chofen by the legiflators, though they are paid by 
the government. Were the court of Madrid to pufli their intereil 
wfth half the zeal of the Jefuits, California miglit become one of the 
moll: valuable of their acquifitions, on account of the pearls and other 
valuable articles of commerce which the country contains. At pre- 
fenr, the little Spanllh town near cape St. Lucar is made uie of for no 
other purpofe than as a place of refrefliment for the Manilla fliips, 
and the head reiidence of the milBonar/es. 

The civil government of all this vaft country, included in the ge- 
neral name of Mexico, is adminiftered by tribunals, called audiences, 
three of which are held in Old, and two in New-Mexico. In theie 
courts the viceroy of the King of Spain prefides ; his employment is 
the greateft truft and power his Catholic Majeity has at his difpofal, 
and is perhaps the richefl government intruded to any fubjeft in the 
•I'orld. The viceroy qoniinues in oilice three ye.u"s. 



The clergy are exceedingly numerous in Mexico ; the priclls; 
iDonks, and nuns, of all orders, make a fifth part of the white inha- 
titants, both here and in other parts of Spanifli America. 

The city of Mexico is the oldefi: in America, of which we have 
any account. The Abbe Clavigero, who is our authority for the 
preceding account of this country, dates its foundation as far back as 
1325. It is fituatcd in the charming vale of Mexico, on feveral fmall 
iliands, in lake Tetzcuco, in north latitude 19^26', and 276^34' 
weft longitude from Perro. This vale is furrounded with lofty and 
rerdarit mountains, and formerly contained no lefs than forty emi- 
iient cities, beiides villages and hnmlsts. The city is fubjeft to fre- 
quent inundation?, as is ealily accounted for from its local fituation, 
the lake in which it ftands beine the refervoir of the waters flowing: 
from the neighbouring mountains. 

Concerning the ancient population of this city there are various 
opinions. The hiilorians molt to be relied on fay, that it was nearly 
nine miles in circumference, and contained upwards of iixty thoufand 
hoiife?, conlaining each from four to ten inhabitants. Some hifto- 
rians reckon one huntlrcd and twenty thoufand, and fome one hun- 
dred and thirty thoufand houfes. By a late accurate enumeration, 
made by the magiftrates and priclls, it appears that the prefent num- 
ber of inhabitants exceeds two hundred thoufand. We may form 
fome idea of its popnloufnefs from the quantity of pulque * and to- 
bacco which are daily confumed in it, afcertained from the cuftom- 
houfe books, February 23, 1775. Every day upwards of one hundred 
and ninety thoufand pounds of pulque are carried into the city, 
which are almoft folely confumed by the Indians and Mulattoes, who 
drink this beverage. The tax upon it amounts annually to about two 
hundred and eighty thoufand crowns. The daily confumptioa 
^-of tobacco is reckoned at one thoufmd two hundred and fifty 

The greateft curiofity in the city of Mexico is their floating gar- 
dens. When the IMexicans, about the year 1325, were fubduvid by 
the Colhuan and Tepanecan nations, and confined to the fmall 
iflands in tlie lake, having no land to cultivate, they were taught by 
necelfuy to form moveable gardens, which floated on the lake. Their 

* Fuique is thv ufual wine or hccr of the Mexicans, maJc of the fermented iuics 
ofthcmaguci. This liquor will not kcr-p but one day, and therefore wli.u is made Is 
•Jail; coiifiiiucJ. 



copftrviftion is very fimple. They take willows and the roots ot 
marfli plants, and other materials which are hght, and twifl them 
together, and fo firmly unite them as to form a fort of platform, which 
is capable offupporting the earth of the garden. Upon this founda- 
tion they lay the light biiflies which float on the lake, and over- 
fpread the mud and dirt which they draw up from the bottom of the 
lake. Their regular figure is quadrangular ; their length and breadth 
various, but generally about eight rods long and three wide ; and 
their elevation from the f^jrface of the water is lefs than a foot. 
Thefe were the firft fields that the Mexicans owned after the founda- 
tion of Mexico ; there they firft cultivated the maize, great pepper, 
and other plants necefHiry for their fupport. From the induftry of 
the people thefe fields foon became numerous. At prefent they cul- 
tivate flowers and every fort of garden herbs upon them. Every day 
of the year, at fun-rife, innumerable veilels or boats, loaded with va- 
rious kinds of flowers and herbs v.hich nie cultivated in thefe gar- 
dens, are feen arriving by the canal at the great market place of 
IMcxico. All plants thrive in them furprifingly ; the mud of the lake 
makes a very rich foil, which requires no water from the clouds. Iil 
the largefl: gardens there is commonly a little tree, and a little hut to 
flielter the cultivator, and defend him from the rain or the fun. 
When the owner of a garden, or the Chinampa. as he is called, 
wiflies to change his fituation, to get out of a bad neighbourhood, 
or to come nearer to his family, he gets into his little boat, and by 
bis own ftrength alone, if the garden is fmall, or with the afTiflance 
of others, if it is large, condufts it wherever he pleafes, with the 
little tree and hut upon it. That part of the ifiand where thefe float- 
ing gardens are, is a place of delightful recreation, where the fenfes 
receive the highefl poflibie gratification. 

The bviildings, Vv-hich are of ffone, are convenient, and the pub- 
lic edifices, efpecially the churches, are magnificent, and the city has 
the appearance of immenfe wealth. 

The trade of Mexico confifts of three great branches, which ex- 
tend over the whole world. It carries on a traflic with Europe, by 
La Vera Cruz, fituated on the gulph of jMexico, on the North fea ; 
with the Eafl-Indies, by Acapulco on the fouthfeas, two hundred and 
ten miles fouth-wefr, of Mexico ; and v.ith South-America, by the 
fame port. Thefe two fea ports, Vera Cruz and Acapulco, are ad- 
mirably well fituated fov the commercial purpofes to which they were 
applied. It is by means of the former that Mexico pours her wealth 

Vol. IV. Q^ over 


over the whole world, and receives in return the numberlefs luxuries 
and neceflaries which Europe affords her. To this port the fleet 
from Cadiz, called the Flota, confifting of three men of war, as a 
convo}-, and fourteen large merchant fliips, annually arrives about 
the beginning of November. Its cargo confifts of alraoft every com- 
modity and manufa£ture of Europe ; and there are few nations but 
have more concern in it than the Spaniards, who fend out little' - 
except wine and oil. Tht profit of thefe, wifh the freight and com- 
miffion to the merchants, and duty to the king, is all the advantage 
which Spain derives from the American comrherce. When all the 
goods are landed and difpofed of at La Vera Cruz, the fleet takes in 
tA\c plate, precious ftones, and other commodities for Europe. 
Some time in IMay they are ready to depart. From La Vera Cruz 
they fail to the Havannah, in the ifle of Cuba,^ which is the rendez- 
vous where they meet the galleons, another fleet which carries on 
the trade of Terra Firn^ia by Carthagena, and of Peru by Panama and 
Porto Bello. When all are coUefted and provided with a convoy 
HecefTary for their fafety, they fleer for Old-Spain. 

Acapulco is the fea port by which the communication is kept up 
between the different parts of the Spanifli empire in America, and 
the Eail-Lidies. About the month of December, the great galleon, 
attended by a large fliip as a convoy, which make the only communi- 
cation between the Philippines and Mexico, annually arrive here. 
The cargoes of thefe fliips (for the convoy, though in a clandefline 
manner, iJkevvifj carries goods) confifl of all the rich commodities 
and manufafturcs of the eaft. At the fame time the annual fliip fron-^ 
Lima, the capital of Peru, comes in, and is computed to bring not 
kfs than two millions of pieces of eight in filver, befides quick- 
iilver, and other vahiable commodities, to be laid out in the pur- 
chafe of the galleons cargoes. Several other fliips, from different 
parts of Chili and Peru, meet upon the fame occafion. A great fair,- 
i n which the commodities of all parts of the world are bartered for 
one another, lalts thirty days. The galleon then prepares for her 
voyage, loatled with filver and fiich European goods as have been 
thouglit necclfary. The Spaniards, though this trade be carried on 
entirely through their hands, and in the very heart of their domini- 
ons, are comparatively but fmall gainers by it. For as they allow the 
Dutch, Great-Britain, and other commercial ftates, to furnifli the 
greater part of the cargo of the flota, fo the Spanifli inhabitants of 
■ihe Philippines, tainted with the indolence which ruined their Euro- 



pean anceflors, permit the Chinefe merchants to furnifli the greater 
part of the cargo of the galleon. Notwithftandiiig what has been 
faid of Vera Cruz apd Acapulco, the city of Mexico, the capital of 
the empire, ought to be confidered as the center of commerce in this 
part of the world ; for here the principal merchraits refide, and the 
greatell part of the bufinefs is negociated. The Eaft-India goods 
from Acapulco, and the European from Vera Cruz, alfo pafs 
through this city. Hither all the gold and River come to be coined, 
here the king's fifth is depofited, and here are wrought all thofc 
\itenfils and ornaments in plate, which are every year fent into 

The empire of Mexico was finally fubdued by Cortes, in the year 
1521. Montezuma was at that time eniperor of Mexico. In the 
courfe of the war, he was treacheroufly taken by Cortes, and held as 
a prifoner. During the imprifonment of Montezuma, Cortes and 
his army had made repeated attacks on his fubjefts, but without 
fuccefs. Cortes was now determined, as his laft refource, to try 
what effect the interpofition of Montezuma might have to foothe or 
overawe his fubje<5ts. This unfortunate prince, at the mercy of the 
treacherous Spaniards, and reduced to the fad neceffity of becoming 
the inflrument of his own difgrace, and of the fiavery of his fubjefts, 
advanced to the battlements in his royal robes, in all the pomp in 
whicli he ufed to appear on folemn occafions. At fight of their 
Ibvereign, whom they had long been accuftomed to honour, and 
almofl to revere as a god, the weapons dropped from their hands, 
every tongue was filent, all bowed their heads, and rnany proftrated 
themfelves on the ground. Montezuma addrefled them with every 
argument that could mitigate their rage, or perfuade them from hof- 
tilities. When he ended his difcourfe, a fuUen murmur of difappro- 
bation ran through the crowd ; to this fucceeded reproaches and 
threats ; and their fury rifing in a moment, they violently poured in 
■whole flights of arrows and vollies of ftones upon their unhappy mo- 
narch, two of the arrows llruck him in his body, which, with the 
blow of a ftone on his temple, put an end to his life. Guatimozin 
fucceeded JMontezuma, and maintained a vigorous oppofition againft 
the affaults of Cortes ; but he, like his prcdeceflbr, after a noble 
defence, was forced to fubmit, and his capital was wrefted from him 
by Cortes and his followers. 

The exultation of the Spaniards, on accompllfliing this arduous cn- 
terprife, was at firft exceffive. But this was c^uickly dumped by the 

Q^a cruel 


cruel difappointment of thofe l^inguine hopes which had animated 
them amidft fo many harddiips and dangers. Inftead of the inex- 
haullible wealth which they expefted from becoming mafters of 
Montezuma's treafures, and the ornaments of fo many temples, their 
rapacioufnefs could colledl only an inconfiderable booty amid.ft ruins 
and defolation.* Guatimozin, aware of his impending fate, had 
ordered what remained of the riches amafled by his anceftors to be 
thrown into the lake. The Indian auxiliaries, whil? the Spaniards 
were engaged in conflift with the enemy, had carried off the moll 
valuable part of the fpoil. Tht; fum to be divided among the con- 
querors was fo fmall, that many of them difdained to accept of the 
pittance which fell to their fliare, and all riiurmured and exclaimed ; 
Ibme againft Cortes and his confidents, whom they fufpecled of 
having fecretly appropriated to their own ufe a large portion of the 
riches which fhould have been brought into the common ftock ; 
others againft Guatimozin, whom they accufed of obflinacy, in refu- 
fing to difcover the place where he had hidden his treafure. 

Arguments, intreaties, and promifes, were employed in order to 
foothe them, but with fo little effeft, that Cortes, from folicitude to 
check this growing fpirit of difcontent, gave way to a deed which 
flained the glory of all his great a6lions. Without regarding the for- 
mer dignity of Guatimozin, or feeling any reverence for thofe vir- 
tues which he had difplayed, he fubjcded the unhappy monarch, to- 
gether with his chief favourite, to torture, in order to force from 
them a difcovery of the royal treafures, which it was fuppofed they 
had concealed. Guatimozin bore u'hatever the refined cruelty of his 
tormentors could infli'.:t, with the invincible fortitude of an American 
warrior. His fellow-fuiferer, overcome by the violence oj- the an- 
guifli, turned a dejected eye towards his mailer, which feemed to im- 
plore his permiffion to reveal all he knew. But the high-fpirited 
prince, darting on him a look of authoriry mingled with fcorn, 
checked his weaknefs, by afking, " Am I now repoiing on a bed of 
*' flovv/ers ?" Overawed b}'' the repioach, he pcrfevered in his dutiful 
filence, and expired. Cortes, afaamcd of a fcene fo horrid, refcued 
the royal viftim from the hands of his torturers, and prolonged a life 
j'eferved for new indignities and fuiferings. 

' * The g'Ad anJ filvcr, accoi\ilnj to Coitcs, anioiinred only to one lum.'.red ;in4 
twei.ty thoiifand pcfos, a fum far iiik-vlor to th;it v h'cii the Sp(i:i;irds had formerly 
divided in Mexico, 

c The 


The fate of the capital, as both parties had forefeen, decided that 
of the empire. The provinces fubmitted one after another to 
the conquerors. Small detachments of Spaniards marching througl^ 
them without interruption, penetrated, in different quarters, to the 
great Southern ocean, which, according to the ideas of Columbus, they 
imagined would open a lliort, as well as an eafy paflage to the Eaft- 
Indies, and fecyre to the crown of Caftile all the envied wealth of 
fhofe fertile regions ; and the aftive mind of Cortes began already to 
form fchemes tor attempting this important difcovery. In his after 
fchemes, however, he was difaf)poiated, but Mexico hath ever fine? 
Remained in the hands of the Spaniards, 


( "S ) 



E now enter upon the defcription of that part of the globe, 
where the human mind will be fuccelTively furprifed with the fublims 
and aftonifhing works of Nature ; where rivers of amazing breadth 
flow thfough beautiful and widely- extended plains, and where lofty 
mountains, whofe fummits are covered with eternal fnow, intercept 
the courfe of the clouds^ and hide their heads from the view of mor- 
tals. In fome parts of this extenfive region, nature hath bountifully 
beftowed her treafures, and given every thing neceflary for the con- 
venience and happinefs of man. We have only to regret, that a fet of 
avaricious men have fucceffively drenched with innocent blood thefe 
plains, which are fo beautifully formed and enriched by the hand of 
Nature ; and that the rod of Spanish despotism has prevented the 
population of a country which might have fupported millions of be- 
ings in affluence. 


South-America, like Africa, is an extenfive peninfula, connefted 
with North-America by the iilhmus of Darien, and divided between 
Spain, Portugal, France, Holland, and the Aeorigines> 
as follows : 

f Terra Firma, 

Spanish Dominions, ^ , m'-V' 
' j Lhili, 

t Paraguay. 

Portuguese, . . . Brazil, 

French, . . . . Cnyenne, 

Dutch, ..... Surinam, 

A f Amazonia, 

Aborigines, -f „ , • * 

I Patagonia. 
Cf thefe countries we fliall treat in their order* 


< iiS ) 



Enow enter upon the defcription of that part of the globe, 
where the human mind will be fucceffively fiirprifed witli the fublime 
and aftonifhing works of Nature ; where rivers of amazing breadth 
flow thfough beautiful and widely-extended plains, and where Jofty 
mountains, whofe fummits are covered with eternal fnow, intercept 
the courfe of the clouds^ and hide their heads from the view of mor- 
tals. In fome parts of this extenfive region, nature hath bountifully 
beftowed her treafures, and given every thing neceiTary for the con- 
venience and happinefs of man. We have only to regret, that a fet of 
avaricious men have fucceffively drenched with innocent blood thefe 
plains, which are fo beautifully formed and enriched by the hand of 
Nature ; and that the I'od of Spanish despotism has prevented the 
population of a country which might have fupported millions of be- 
ings in affluence. 


South- America, like Africa, is an exten five peninfula, connefted 
with North-America by the ifthmus of Darien, and divided between 
Spain, Portugal, Fp.axce, Holland, and the Aeorigines^ 
as follows : 

f Terra Firma, 
Spanish Dominions, 4 ,-m'm' 

L Paraguay. 

Portuguese, . . . Brazil, 

French, . . . . Cayenne, 

Dutch, ..... Surinam, 

A „ f Amazonia, 

Aborigines, in. ■ 

I Patagonia. 
Of thefe countries we fliall treat in their order* 


( "9 ) 





J. ERRA FIRMA is fituated between 6!)°'and 82° weft longitude, anci 
the equator and 12° degrees north latitude ; its length is one thoufancl 
four hundred miles, and its breadth leven hundred : it is bounded 
on the north by the Atlantic ocean, (called there the North fea ;) 
on the eafl by the Atlantic ocean and Surinam ; on the fouth by 
Amazonia and Peru ; and on the well by the Pacific ocean. It is 
divided into two gnind divifion?, North and South; thefe arc 
again fubdivided into provinces. 

The northern divifion containing, i. DARIE^f, or Terra Firma 
Proper: 2. Carthagena : 3. St.MARTHA: 4. Ven£ZEula; 
5. Comana: 6. Paria, or New-Andalusia. 

The fouthern divifion containing, i. New-Granada: a. Po- 



Darien is the naiTow ifthmus, or neck of land, that, properly 
fpeaking, joins North and South-America together, but is generally 
reckoned as part of the latter. It is bounded on the north by the 
North fea, on the fouth by the South fea, on the eaft by the gulph 
or river of Darien, and on the wefi: by another part of the South 
fea and the province of Vcragiia. It lies in the form of a bow, or 
crefcent, about the great bay of Panama in the South fea, and is 
three hundred miles in length and fixty in breadth. This province 
is not the richeft, but is of the greateft importance to Spain, and 
has been the fcene of more actions than any other in America. The 
wealth of Peru is brought hither, and from hence exported 
to Europe. This has induced many enterprifing people to make 
attempts on Panama, Porto-Bcllo, and other towns of this province, 
in hopes of obtaining a rich booty. 


I20 genera! description 

The Scotch got pofTeffion of part of this province in 1699, 2na 
attempted to form an eftablifliment, which would have proved one 
of the moft ufeful and important that ever was projefted. Of the^ 
rife, prcgrefs and cataftrophe, of this well-imagined, but ill-fated, 
undertaking, Sir John Dalrymple, in the fecond volume of his Me- 
moirs of Great-Britain and Ireland, has given a very interefting ac- 
count, authenticated in every particular by unqucftionable docu- 
ments. The projeftor and leader of the Darien expedition was i 
clergyman of the name of Paterfon ; who having a violent propcnfity 
to fee foreign countries, he made his profeffion the inflrument of 
indulging it, by going to the new weftern world, under pretence 
of converting the Indians to the religion of the old. In his courfes 
there, he became acquainted with Capt. Damprer and Mr.Wafer, who 
afterwards publiihed, the one his Voyages and the other his Travels, 
in the region where the feparation 'is narroweft between the At- 
lantic and the South feas ; and both of whom, particularly the firft, 
appear by their books to have been men of confiderable obfervation. 
But he got much more knowledge from men who could neither 
write nor read, by cultivating the acquaintance of fome of the old 
Buccaneers, who, after fiirviving their glories and their crimes, ftill, 
in the extremity of age and misfortune, recounted with tranfport 
'the eafe with which they had pafTed and repaffed from the one fea 
to the other, fometimes in hundreds together, and driving firings of 
mules before them loaded with the plunder of friends and of toes. 
Paterfon, having examined the places, fatisfied himfelf, that on the 
ifthmus of Darien there was a tract of country running acrofs from the 
Atlantic to the South fea, which the Spaniards had never pofTcfltd, 
and inhabited by a people continually at war with them ; that along 
the coafl-, on the Atlantic fide, there lay a firing of iflands calLd 
the Sambaloes, uninhabited, and full of natural ilrength and forefls^ 
from wliich lail circumflance one of them was cdUed the l/Iaud of 
the Pines ; that the feas there were filled with turtle, and the manatee 
or lea-cow ; that mid-way between Porto Bello and Carthagena, but 
near fifty leagues diflant from eitiier, at a place called Afta, in the 
mouth of the river of Darien, there was a natural harbour, capable 
of receiving the greatefl fleets, and defended from ftorms by other 
illands which covered the mouth of it, and from enemies by a pro- 
montory which commanded the paffiige, and hidden rocks in the paf- 
fage itfclf ; that on the other fide of the iflhmus, and in the lame 
trai5t of country, there were natui-al harbours, equally capacious 



and well defended ; that the two feas were conneded by a ridge of 
hills, which, by their height, created a temperate climate in the 
midft of the moft fiiltry btitudes, and were flieltered by forells, not 
yet rendered damp by them, becaiife the trees grew at a diftance 
from each other, having very little under'.vood ; that, contmry to 
the barren nature of hilly countries, the foil was of a black mould 
two or three feet deep, and producing fpontaneoufly the fine tropical 
fruits and plants, and roots and herbs; that roads could be made 
with eafe along the ridge, by which mules, and even carriages, 
might pafs from the one fea to the other in the fpace of a day ; and 
confequently this paflage feemed to be pointed out by the finger of 
Nature, as a common center, to connedt together the trade and inter- 
courfe of the univerfe. 

Paterfon knew that fliips which flretch in a flraight line from one 
point to another, and with one wind, run leis rifks, and require 
fewer hands, than fliips which pafs through many latitudes, turn 
with many coafts, and require many winds ; in evidence of which, 
veflels of feven or eight hundred tons burthen are often to be found 
in the South feas, navigated by no more than eight or ten hands, 
becaufe thefe bands have little elfe to do than fet their fails when 
they begin their voyage, and to take them in when they end it ; that 
as foon as fhips from Britain got fo far fouth as to reach the trade 
wind, which never varies, that wind would carry them to Darien, 
and the fame wind would carry fliips from the bay of Panama, on 
the oppofite fide of the ifthmus, to the Eafl-Indies ; that as loon as 
fliips coming from the Eall-lndles to the b:;y of Panama got fo far 
north as the latitude of forty degrees, to reach the wefterly^ winds, 
which, about that latitude, blow almoft as regularly from the weft 
as the trade winds do from the eafl', thefe winds would ca/ry them, 
in the track of the Spanifli Acapuico fliips, to the coalt of Mexico ; 
from whence the land-wind, which blows for ever from the north 
to the fouth, would carry them along the coaft of Mexico into the 
bay of Panama. So that in going from Britain, fliips would en- 
counter no uncertain winds, except during their palTage fouth into 
the latitude of the trade wind : in coming from India to the bay of 
Panama, no uncertain winds, except in their palfage north to the 
latitude of the wefterly winds ; and in going from the other fide of 
the ifthmus to the eaft, no uncertain wind whatfoever. — Gold was 
feen by Paterfon in fome places of the ifthmus, and hence an ifland en 
the Atlantic fide was called the Golden ifland, and a river on the fide 
Vol. IV. R to 


to the South fea was called the Golden river ; but thefe were objects 
Xvhich he regarded not at that time, becaufe far greater were in his 
eye : the removing of diftances, the drawing nations nearer to each 
other, the prefervation of the valuable lives of feamen, and the 
faving in freight, lb important to merchants, and in time fo impor- 
tant to them, and to an animal whofe life is of fo fhort duration as 
that of man. 

By this obfcure Scotchman, a project was formed to fettle, on 
this neglected fpot, a great and powerful colony ; not as other colo- 
nies have for the moft part been fettled, by chance, and unproteded 
by the country from whence they went ; but by fyftem, upon fore- 
light, and to receive the ample protection of thofe governments to 
whom he was to offer his projeft : and certainly no greater idea has 
been formed fince the time of Columbus. 

Paterfon's original intention was to offer his projeft to Engknd, 
as the country which had moft intereft in it, not only from the benefit 
common to all nations, of fhortening the length of royages to the 
Eail-Indies, but by the efFeft which it would have had to connect 
the intcrefts of her European, Weft-Indian, American, African and 
Eafl-Indian trade. But Paterfon having few acquaintance, and no 
protection in London, thought of drawing the public eye upon 
him, and ingratiating himfelf with monied men and with great men, 
by aflifting them to model a projeft, which was at that time in em- 
bryo, for erecting the Bank of England. But that happened to him 
which has happened to many in his fituation ; the perlbns to whom 
he applied made ufe of his ideas, took the honour of them to 
themfelves, were civil to him for a while, and negleCted him after- 
wards. He therefore communicated his projeCt of a colony only to 
a few perfons in London, and thefe few difcouraged him. 

He next made offer of his projeCt to the Dutch, the Hamburghers, 
and the eleCtor of Brandenburgh ; becaufe, by means of the palTage 
of the Rhine and Elbe through their flates, he thought, that the 
great additional quantities of Eaft-lndian and American goods, 
which his colony would bring into Europe, would be diftributed 
through Germany. The Dutch and Hamburgh merchants, who had 
moft intereft in the fubjeCt of his vifit, heard him with indificrence : 
the elector, who had very little intereft in it, received him with ho- 
nour and kindnefs. But court arts and falfe reports loft him even 
that prince's favour, 



Paterfon, on his return to London, formed a friendfliip with Mr.' 
Fletcher of Salton, whofe mind was inflamed with the love of public 
good, and all of whofe ideas to procure it had a fublimity in them. 
Fletcher brought Paterfon down to Scotland with him, prefented 
him to the Marquis of Tweedale, then minifter for Scotland ; 
and then, with that power which a vehement fpirit always pofTefTes 
oyer a diffident one, perfuaded the Marquis by arguments of public 
good, and the honour which would redound to his adminiftration, 
to adopt the projett. Lord Stair and Mr. Johnfton, the two fecre- 
taries of ftate, patron ifed thofe abilities in Paterfon which they pof- 
fefled in themfelves ; and the lord advocate, Sirjames Stuart, the fame 
man who had adjuftcd the Prince of Orange's declaration at the re- 
volution, whofe fon v/as married to a niece of Lord Stair, went na- 
turally along with his conne(5lions. Thefe pcrfons, in June 1695, 
procured a ftatute from parliament, and afterwards a charter from 
the crown in terms of it, for creating a trading company to Africa 
and the new world, with power to plant colonies and build forts, 
with confent of the inhabitants, in places not poflefled by other 
European nations. 

Paterfon, now finding the ground firm under him, and that he 
was fupported by almoft all the power and talents of his country, the 
charafter of Fletcher, and the fandion of an aft of parliament and 
royal charter, threw his projeft boldly upon the public, and opened 
a fubfcription for a company. The fienzy of the Scotch nation to 
fign the folemn league and covenant, never exceeded the rapidity 
with which they ran to fubfcribe to the Darien company. The no- 
bility, the gentry, the merchants, the people, the royal burghs without 
the exception of one, and moft of the other public bodies, fubfcribed. 
Young women threv/ their little fortunes into the ftock ; widows 
fold their jointures to get the command of money for the fame pur- 
pofe. Almoft in an inftant four hundred thoufand pounds were fub- 
fcribed in Scotland, although it be now known, that there was not 
at that time above eight hundred thoufand pounds of cafli in the 
kingdom. The famous Mr. Law, then a youth, afterwards confefled, 
that the facility with which he faw the paffion of fpeculation com- 
municate itfell from all to all, fatisfied him of the poflibility of pro- 
ducing the fame etfeft from the fame caufe, but upon a larger fcale, 
when the Duke of Orleans, in the year of the MilTiflippi, engaged 
him againft his v/ill to turn his bank into a bubble. Paterfon's pro- 
jcc>, which had been received by- ft rangers with fears when opened 

R a to 


to them in private, filled them with hopes when it came to them 
xipon the wings of pubUc fame: for Col. Erlkinc, fon toLordCar- 
drofs, and Mr. HaJdanc, of Gleneagles, the one a generous branch 
of a generous ftem, and the other a country gentleman of fortune 
and charafter, having been deputed to receive fubfcriptions in Eng- 
land and on the continent, the Englifli fubfcribed three hundred thou- 
sand pounds, and the Dutch and Hamburghers two hundred thoufand 
pounds more. 

In the mean time the jealoufy of trade, which has done more 
inifchief to the trade of England than all other caufes put to- 
gether, created an alarm in England ; and the Houfes of Lords 
and Commons, without previous inquiry and reflexion, on the 13th 
of December, 1695, concurred in a joint addrefs to the king againfl 
the eftablifliment of the Darien company, as detrimental to the in- 
tereft of the Eaft-India company. Soon after, the Commons im- 
peached fome of their own countrymen for being inftrumental in 
erefting the company ; and alfo fome of the Scotch nation, one of 
whom was a peer, Lord Belhaven ; that is to fay, they arraigned the 
fubjedts of another country, for making ufe of the laws of their own. 
Among fix hundred legiflators, not one had the happy ray of genius 
to propofe a committee of both parliaments, to inquire into the prin- 
ciples and confequences of the eftablifliment ; and if thefe fliould, 
upon inquiry, be found, that the benefit of it fliould be communi- 
cated, by a participation of rights to both nations. The king's an- 
fwer was, " That he had been ill-advifed in Scotland." He loon 
after changed his Scottifli minifters, and fent orders to his refident 
at Hamburgh to prefent a memorial to the fenate, in which he dif- 
owneu the company, and warned them againft all connexions with 
it. The fenate lent the memorial to the aflembly of merchants, who 
returned it with the following fpirited anfwer : " We look upon it 
as a very ftrange thing, that the King of Britain fliould offer to hin- 
der us, who are a free people, to trade with whom we pleafe ; but 
are amazed to think, that he would hinder us from joining with his 
own fubjedls in Scotland, to whom he had latt-ly given fuch large 
privileges, by fo folemn an aft of parliament." But merchants, 
though mighty prone to pafTion, are eafily intimidated. The Dutch, 
Hamburgli, and London merchants, withdrew their fubfcriptions. 

The Scotch, not difcouraged, were rather animated by this op- 
prefTion ; for they converted it into a proof of the envy of the Eng- 
lifli, and of their confcioiifncfs of the great advantages which were 



to flow to Scotland from the colony. The company proceeded to 
build fix fliips in Holland, from thirty-fix to lixty guns, and they 
engaged twelve hundred men for the colony; among whom were 
younger fons of many of the noble and moft ancient families of 
Scotland, and fixty officers who had been difbanded at the peace, 
who carried with them fuch of then" private men generally raifed on 
their own, or the eftates of their relations, as they knew to be faith- 
ful and brave ; and moft of thofc were Highlanders. The Scotch 
parliament, on the 5th of Auguft, 169S, unanimoufly addrcfied the 
king to fupport the company. The lord prefident, Sir Hugh Dal. 
rymple, brother to Lord Stair, and head of the bench, and the lord 
advocate, Sir James Stuart, head of the bar, jointly drew memorials 
to the king, able in point of argument, information and arrange- 
ment : in which they defended the rights of the company upon the 
principles of conftitutional and of public law. And neighbouring 
nations, with a mixture of furprife and refpcft, faw the pooreft 
kingdom of Europe fending forth the mofi: gallant and the moft nu- 
merous colony that had ever gone from the old to the new world. 

On the 26th of July, of tne year 1698, the whole city of Edin- 
burgh poured down upon Leith to lee rlic colon-- depart, amidft the 
tears, and prayers and prnifes of relations and friends, and of their 
countrymen. Many feamen and foldiers, whwfe l:.rvices liad been re- 
fufed, becaufe more had otlered tncmlclves than were ;. ceded, were 
found hid in the flrips, and, when onleica afliore, clung to the 
ropes and timbers, implonng to i>p without reward with their com- 
panions. Twelve hundred n;en failed in iive ftout fliips, and arrived 
at Darien in two months, with the lofs of only fifteen of their 
people. At that time it was in their power, molt of whom were well 
born, and all of them hardily bred, and inured to the fatigues and 
dangers of the late war, to have gone from the northmoft part of 
Mexico to the fouthmoft of Cliili, and to have overturned the whole 
empire of Spain in the South feas : but modeft, refpefting their own 
and their country's characler, and afraid of being acculcd that they 
had plunder, and not a fettlement, in view, they began with pur~ 
chafing lands from the natives, and fending melTages of amity to 
the Spanifti governors within their reach : and then fixed their fta- 
tion at Aft.i, calling it New St. Andrew, from the name of the tu- 
telar faint of Scotland, and the country itfelf New-Caledonia. Or.c 
of the fides of the harbour being formed by a long narrow neck of 
land which ran into the fca, they cut it acrofs fo as to join the ocean 



and the harbour. Within this defence they erefted their fort, plant- 
ing upon it fifty pieces of cannon. On the other fide of the harbour 
there was a mountain a mile high, on which they phiced a watch- 
houfe, which, in the rarefied air within the tropics, fo favourable 
for vifion, gave them an immenfe range of profpeft to prevent all 
lurprife. To this place, it was obferved that the Highlanders often 
repaired, to enjoy a cool air, and to talk of their friends they had 
left behind in their hills ; friends whofe minds were as high as their 
mountains. The firfl public aft of the colony was to publifii a de- 
claration of fieedom of trade and religion to all nations. This lumi- 
nous idea originated with Paterfon. 

But the Dutch Eaft-India company having prefTed the king, in. 
concurrence with his Englidi fubjedts, to prevent the fettlementat 
Darien, orders had been fent from England to the governors of the 
Weft-Indian and American colonies, to iflue proclamations againft 
giving affiftance, or even to hold correfpondence wi:h the colony, 
and thefe were more or lefs harlhly exprelTed, according to the 
tempers of the different governors. The Scotch, trufling to far 
different treatment, and to the fiipplies which they expefted from 
thofe colonies, had not brought provifions enough with them, they 
fell into dlfeafes from bad food and from want of food. But the 
more generous favages, by hunting and fifliing for them, gave them 
that relief which fellow Britons refufed. They lingered eight 
months, awaiting, but in vain, for affiftance from Scotland, and al- 
moft all of them either died or qi.iitted the fettlement. Paterfon, 
who had been the firft that entered the fliip at Leith, was the Infl 
who went on board at Darien. 

During the fpace of two years, while the eflablifliment of this co- 
lony had been in agitation, Spain had made no complaint to Eng- 
land or Scotland againft it : the Darien council even averred in their 
papers, which are in the Advocates Library, that the right of the 
company was debated before the king, in prefenxe of the Spanifli 
amballador, before the colony left Scotland. But now, on the 3d 
of May, 1698, the Spanifli ambaftador at London prelented a me- 
inorial 10 the king, which complained of the fettlement at Darien as 
an encroachment on the rights of his mafter. 

The Scotch, ignorant of the misfortunes of their colony, but pro- 
voked at this memorial, fent out another oolony foon after of thirteen 
hundred men, to fiipport an eftablifliment which was now no more. 
But this laft expedition, having been n.ore ha^lily prepared than the 



firft, was unlucky in its paflage : one of the fliips was loft at fea, 
many men died on fliip-board, and the reft arrived at different times, 
broken in their health and difpirited, when they heard the fate of 
thofe who had gone before them. — Added to ihe misfortunes of the 
firft colony, the fecond had a misfortune peculiar to itfelf: the 
general aflembly of the church of Scotland fcnt out four minifters, 
with orders " to take charge of the fouls of the colony, and to eredt 
a prclbytery, with a moderator, clerk, and record of proceedings ; 
to appoint ruling elders, deacons, overfeers of the manners of 
the people, and aillftants in the exercife of church difcipline and 
government, and to hold regular kirk feffions," When they ar- 
rived, the officers and gentlemen were occupied in building houfes 
for themfelves with their own hand?, becaufe there was no help to 
be got from others ; yet the four minifters complained grievoufly, 
that the council did not order houfes to be immediately built for their 
accommodation. They had not the precaution to bring with them 
letters of recommendation from the directors at home to the council 
abroad. On thefe accounts, not meeting with all the attention they 
expefted from the higher, they paid court to the inferior ranks of 
the colonifts, and by that means threw divilions into the colony. 

The lall party that joined the fecond colony at Darien, after it 
had been three months fettled, was Captain Campbell of Finab, 
with a company of the people of his eftate, whom he had com- 
manded in Flanders, and whom he carried to Darien in his own 
fliip. On their arrival at New St. Andrew, they found intelligence 
had been lately received, that a Spnnifli force of fixteen hundred 
men, which had been brought from the coaft of the South fea, lay 
encamped at Tubucantee, waiting there till a Spanifli fquadron of 
eleven ftiips which was expefted fliould arrive, when they were 
jointly to attack the fort. The military command was offered to 
Captain Campbell, in compliment to his reputation and to his birth, 
who was dclcended from tiie families of Breadalbane and Athol. In 
order to prevent a joint attack, he refolved to attack firft ; and 
therefore, on the fecond day after his arrival, he marched with two 
hundred men to Tubucantee, befoi'e his arrival known to the 
enemy, ftormed the can-.p in the night-time, diiri]}ated the Spanifli 
force with much flaughter, and returned to the fort the fifth day : 
but he found the Spanifli fliips before the liarbour, their troops 
landed, and almoft all hope of help or provifion cut oflf; yet he flood 
a fiege near fix weeks, till al.Tioft all the oHlcers were dead, the enemy 



by their approaches had cut off his wells, and his balls were {o far 
expended, that he was obliged to melt the pewter diflies of the gar- 
rifon iiuo balls. The garrifon then capitulated, and obtained not 
only tiie common honours of war and fecurity for the property of 
the company, but, as if tdey had been conquerors, exafted hoftages 
for perfornvunce of the conditions. Captain Campbell alone defired 
to be excepted from the capitulation, faying, he was fure the Spa- 
niards could not forgive him the mifchief which he fo lately had 
clone them. The brave, by their courage, often efcape that death 
which they feem to provoke : Captain Campbell made his efcape in 
his veflel, and, flopping no where, arrived fafely at New-York, and 
from thence to Scotland, where the company prefented him with a 
gold medal, in which his virtue was commemorated, to inHarae his 
family with the love of heroic actions. 

A harder fate attended thofe whom Captain Campbell left at 
Darien. They were fo weak in their health as not to be able to 
weigh up the anchors of the Riling Sun, one of their fliips, which 
carried fixty guns ; but the generous Spaniards affifted them. In 
going out of the harbour Ihe ran aground : the prey was tempting, 
and to obtain it, the Spaniards had only to ftand by and look on ; 
but fhewed that mercy to the Scotch in diilrels, which one of the 
countrymen of thofe Scotch, General Elliot, returned to the pof- 
teriry of the Spaniards at the end of the late conflagration at the 
fiege of Gibraltar. The Darien fliips being leaky and weakly man- 
ned, were obliged in their voyage to take flielter in different ports 
belonging to Spain and England. The Spaniards in the new world 
fliewed them kindnefs ; the Englidi governments fliewed them none; 
and in one place one of their fliips was feized and detained. Of 
thefe only Captain Campbell's fliip and another fmall one were 
faved : the Royal Sun was loft on the bar of Charleflon, and of the 
colony, not more than thirty, fitved from war, fliipvvreck or difcafe, 
ever faw their country again, 

Paterfon, who had flood the blow, could not fland the reflexion 
of misfortune : he was feized v>'ith a lunacy in his pafTage home after 
the ruin of the firft colony, but he recovered in his own country, 
where his fpirit, flill ardent and unbroke, prefented a new plan to 
the company; founded on the idea of William, that England 
Ihould have the joint dominion of the fettlement with Scotland. 

He furvived many years in Scotland, pitied, refpecfled, but neg- 

ledled. After the union of the two kingdoms, he claimed reparation 

■4 ot" 


■6f his lolTes from the equivalent-money given by England to the 
Darien company, but got nothing, becaufe a grant to him from a 
public fund would have been only an acl of humanity, not a political 

Thus ended the colony of Darien, Men look into the works of 
poets for fubjecfbs of fatire, but they are more often to be found in 
the records of hiftory. The application of the Dutch to King Wil- 
liam againil the Darien company, aftbrds the fureft of all proof?, 
that it was the intereft of the Bricifli iflands to fupport it. England^ 
by the imprudence of ruining that fettlement, loft the opportunity 
of gaining and continuing to herfelf the greateft commercial empire 
that probably ever will be upon earth. Had Ihe treated with Scot- 
land, in the hour of the diftrefs of the company, for a joint pofleffioo 
of the fettlement, or adopted the union of the kingdoms, which th(S 
fovereign of both propofed to them, that poffeffion could certainly 
have been obtained. Had fhe treated with Spain to relinquifli an 
imaginary right, or at leaft to give a paffage acrofs the iilhmusj 
Upon receiving duties fo high as to overbalance all the chance of 
fofs by a contraband trade, (he had probably obtained either the' 
one or the other. Had flie broke with Spain for the fake of gaining- 
by force one of thofe favours, flie would have loft far lefs than flie 
afterwards did by carrying a war into that country for many years, 
to force a king upon the Spaniards againft their will. Even a rup- 
ture with Spain for Darien, if it had proved fuccefsful, v/ould hav« 
knit the tv.'o nations together by the moft folid of ties, their mutual 
intereft ; for the Eiiglifti muft then have depended upon Spain foe 
the fafety of their caravans by land, and the Spaniards upon England 
for the fafety of their fleets by fea. Spain and England would have 
been bound together as Portugal and England have long been ; and 
the Spaniftv treafures have failed, under the wings of Englifti na- 
vies, from the Spanifn main to Cadiz, in the fame manner as th« 
treafures of Portugal have failed under the fame prote6tion, facred 
and Untouched, from the Brazils to Lift)on. 

Panama is the capital city of this province, where the treafures of 
gold and filver, and the other rich raerdiandifes of Peru, are lodged 
in magazines till they are fent to Europe. It is (ituated weft longi- 
tude 82° 15', north latitude 8^ ^f. 

When Guzman fi.-ft touched at this place in 1514, it confifted en- 
tirely of fifliermen's huts. Orius d'Avila fettled a colony here in a 
few years after, and jn 1521 it was conftltuted a city by the emperor 

Vol, IV. S Chailds 


Ch.>rles V. with the proper privileges. In 1670, it was facked and 
burnt by John Morgan, an Englifli adventurer, who had the prece- 
ding year taken 1 orto Bel'o. This misfortune induced the inhabi- 
tants to remove the city to its prefent fituation, diftant about a league 
from the place where it ftood before. For the greater fecurity, the 
new city was inclofed by a fice-ftone wall, and the houfes were built 
of rtone and brick. Since that time fe\ eral baftions have been added, 
and now there is always a complete garrifon maintained, and the walls 
are mounted with large cannon. But al! thefe precautions could not 
fave this city from another misfortune; it was entirely confumed by 
fire in the year 1737. After this accident it was again rebuilt, in the 
manner as it now ilands, with neat elegant houfes, but not magnifi- 
cent. The inhabitants are rather independent in their fortunes than 
rich ; there are few of them opulent, and fcarce any in a ftate of po- 
verty. As to the harbour, it is convenient, and well fecured againft 
flormsby a number of furrounding iflands, and is capable of contain- 
ing the largeft fleets. Here the royal audience is feated, at which the 
governor of Panama refides ; for which reafon the city is commonly 
deemed the cnpital of the province. 

This place, a little while after it was founded, became the capital 
of the kingdom of Terra Firma. Some hopes were at firft entertained 
from the three provinces of Panama, Darien, and Veragua, which 
compofed it, but this profperity vaniflied inftantaneoufly. The fa- 
vages of Darien recovered their independence, and the mines of the 
two other provinces were found to be neither fufliciently abun- 
dant, nor of an alloy good enough to make it worth while to work 
them. Five or fix fmall boroughs, in which are feen fome Euro- 
peans quite naked, and a very fmall number of Indians who have 
come to rcfide there, form the whole of this fiste, which the Spa- 
niards are not afaaiued of honouring with the great name of king- 
dom. It is in general barren and unvvholefome, and contributes no- 
thing to trade but pearls. 

The pearl fifliery is carried on in the iflands of the gnlph. The 

•greatefl part of the inhabitants employ fuch of the negroes in 

it as are good fwimniers. Thefe flaves plunge and re-plunge in the 

fea in feurch of pearls, till this exercife has exhaufted their ftrengiK 

or their Ipirits. 

Every negro is obliged to deliver a certain number of oyflers. 
Thofc in which there are no pearls, or in which the pearl is not en- 
tirely furmed, are not reckoned. What he is able to find beyond 



the ftipulated obligation, is confidered as his indifputable property; he 
may Lil it to whom he pleafes, but comi'uonly he cedes it to his mafter 
at a moderate price. 

Sea monfters, which abound more about the iflands where pearls 
are found than on the neighbouring coalb, render this filhing c*ua- 
gerous. Some of thefe devour the divers in an inllant. The 
manta fifli, which derives its name from its figure, fiu'rounds them, 
rolls them under its body, and fuftbcates them. In order to defend 
therafelves againft fuch enemies, every diver is armed \vith a p-;ig- 
iiard ; the moment he perceives any of thefe voracious fifli, he at- 
tacks them with precaution, wounds them, and drives them away, 
Notwithflanding this, there are always fome tifliermen deilroyed, and 
a great number crippled. 

The pearls of Panama are commonly of a very fine water. Some 
of them are even remarkable for their fize and figure ; thefe were for- 
merly fold in Europe. Since art lias imitated them, and the paffion 
for diamonds has entirely fupcrfeded, or prodigioufly diminiflied the 
ufed of them, they have found a new mart more advantageous 
than the firft. They are carried to Peru, where they are in great 

This branch of trade ha?, however, infinitely Icfs contributed to 
give reputation to Panamu, than the advantage v/hich it hath long en- 
joyed of being the mart of all the productions of the countr^ of the 
Incas that are deftined for the old world. Thefe riches, which are 
brought hither by a fmall fleet, were carried, fome on mules, 
«thers by the river Chagre, to Porto Bello, that is fituated on the 
northern coafl of the ifthmus, which feparates the two fcas. 


Carthagena is one of the moll confiderable provinces in this ter- 
ritory, on account of the gceat trade carried on by the capital, for 
the country itfelf is neither fertile, rich, norpopulous. The capital 
city, called likewife Carthagena, is fituated in well longitude 77 ', and 
north latitude 1 1', on a fandy illand, by moft vyriters called a penin- 
fula ; which forming a narrow paflage on the fouth-weit, opens a 
communication with that called Tierra Bemba, as far as Bucco Chica. 
The little ifland which now joins them was formerly the entrance of 
the bay, but it having been filled up by orders of the court, Bocca 
Chica became the only entrance ; this, however, has been filled up 
|ince the attempt of Vernon and Wcntworth, and the old p.ifiTage 

S * agaia 


again opened. On the north fide the land is fo narrow, that beford 
the vvalJ was begun, the diftance fronti fea to fea was only thirty-five 
toifes ; but afterwards enlarging, it forms another ifland on this fide, 
fo that excepting thefe two places, the whole city is entirely fur- 
rounded by fait water. To the eaftivard it has a communication, by 
means of a wooden bridge, >vith a large fuburb, called Xemani^ 
built on another ifland, which is alio joined to the continent by a 
bridge of the fame materials. The fortifications both of the city and 
fuburbs are built after the modern manner, and lined with free-flone ; 
^nd in time of peace, the garrifon confifts of ten companies, of 
feventy-feven men each, befides militia. The city and fuburbs are 
>veU laid out, the flreets flrait, broad, uniform, and well paved. 
All the houfes are built ot flone or brick, only one flory high, well 
contrived, neat, and furuifhed with balconies and lattices of wood, 
which is more durable in that climate than iron, the latter being foot? 
corroded by the acrimonious quality of the atniofphere. TJie climate 
is exceedingly unhealthy. The Europeans are particularly fubje6t to 
the terrible difeafe called the black vomit, which fvveeps off multi- 
tudes annually on the arrival of the galleons. It feldom continues 
above three or fopr days, in which time the patient is either dead or 
out of danger, and if he recovers, is never fubje6t to a return of tho 
fame difle-mper. This difeafe has hitherto foiled all the arts of the 
Spanifh phyficiaps, as has alfo the leprofy, which is very commori 
here. At Carthagena, likewife, that painful tumour in the legs, oc- 
pafioned by the entrance of the dracunculus, or guinea-worm, i§^ 
very common and troublefome. Another diforder, peculiar to this 
country and to Peru, is occafioned by a little infect called nigua, fo 
extremely minute, as fcarce to be vifible to the naked eye. This in- 
feft breeds in the duft, infipuatts iti'elf into the foles of the feet and 
the hgs, piercing the Ikin with fuch fubtlelty, that there is no being 
ciware of ir, before it has made its way to the fledi. Jf it is per- 
ceived in the beginning, it is extrafted with little pain ; but having 
once lodged its head, and pierced the Ikin, the patient iniifi undergo 
the pain of an incifion, vi^ithout which a nodus would be formed, and 
a multitude of infetls ingendered, wuith would foon ovcrfpread the 
foot and leg. One fpecies of the nigua is venomous, and when it 
enters the toe, an inflammatory Iwelling takes place ^in the 




St. Martha is "bounded on the north, by the North fea ; on the eaft, 
by Rio de la Hache ; on the I'outh, by New-Granada : and on the 
weft, by Carthagena. It is three hundred miles in length, and two 
hundred in breadth, is a mountainous country, and the land very 
high. Here begins the famous ridge of mountains called the Cordil- 
leras ties los Andes, which run from north to fouth the whole length 
of the continent of South- America ; it is extremel}'^ hot on the fea 
coaft, but cold in the internal parts, on account of the mountains ; 
it abounds with the fruits proper to the climate, and there are mines 
of gold and precious ftones, as alfo falt-works. The Spaniards pof- 
fefs but one part of this province, in which they have built Marth^ 
the capital. The air about the town is wholefome, and is feated 
near the fea, having a harbour furrounded with high mountains. It 
was formerly very confiderable when the galleons were fcnt thither, 
but is now come almoft to nothing. Weil longitude 74- 1 1\ north 
latitude 1 1° 20". 

The province contiguous to St. Martha on the eaft was firft vifitedi 
by Alonfo de Ojeda, in the year 1499 5 ^"^ ^^^ Spaniards, on their 
landing there, having obferyed fome huts in an Indian village built 
upon piles, in order to raife them abov^e the ftagnated water which co- 
vered the plain, were led to beftovv upon it the name of Venezuela, 
or Little- Venice, by their ufual propenfity to find a refemblance be- 
tween what they difcovered in America, and the objeili which were 
familiar to them in Europe. They made fome attempts to fettle 
there, but with little fuccefs. The final redu£lion of the province 
was accomplidied by means very different from thofe to which Spain 
was indebted for its other acquifitions in the New Worlds The am* 
bition of Charles V. often engaged him in operations of fuch variety 
and extent, that his revenues were not fufticient to defray the cx- 
penfe of carrrying them into execution. Among other expedients for 
fupplying the deficiency of his funds, he had borrowed large fums 
from the Velfers of Augfburgh, the moft opulent merchants at that 
time in Europe. By way of retribution for thefe, or in hopes 
perhaps, of obtaining a new loan, he beftowed upon them the pro-r 
yifice of Venezuela, to be held as an hereditary lief from the crowi^ 



of Caftlle, on condition that within a limited time they faould ren- 
der themfelves mafters of the country, and eftablifli a colony there. 
Under the direftion of fiich perfons, it might nave been expected, 
that a fettlement would have been eilabliflied on maxans very dif- 
ferent from thofe of the Spaniards, anJ brcter calfuiated to en- 
courage fueh iifeful induftry, as mercantiie proprleors might have 
known to be the moft certain fource of profperity and opulence : 
but unfortunately they committed the exi^cunon of their plan to 
fome of thofe foldiers of fortune with which Germany abounded in 
the fixteenth century. Thefe adverturers, impatient to amafs 
riches, that they might fpeedily ab.mdon a flation which th.ey foon 
difcovered to be very iincomfortabie, inflead of planting a colony in 
order to cultivate and improve the countrj-, wandered trora diftrift 
to diftrift in fcarch of mints, plundering the natives with unfeeling 
rapacity, or oppreffing them by the impofition of intolerable talks. 
Jn the courfe of a few years, their avarice and exactions, in compa- 
rifon \vith which thofe of the Spaniards were moderate, defolated 
the province fo completely, that it could hardly afford them fub- 
fjftence ; and the Velfers relinquiflied a property from which the in- 
confiderate conduct of their agents left them no hope of ever de- 
riving any advantage.* When the wretched remainder of the Ger- 
mans deferted Venezuela, the Spaniards again took poffeffion ©f it ; 
but, notvvithftanding many natural advantages, it is one of their 
mofl languifliiug and unproductive fettlements. 


Thefe provinces are bounded on the north by the Xorth fen, on 
the eaft by Surinam, on the weft by New-Granada, and on the 
fouth by Guiana; its produce is various, but in relating the origin 
and operations cif the mercantile coivpany, in which an exclulive 
right of trade \^ith them has been vefied, we fnall hereafter have 
occafion to confider their ftate and piodudlions in a more ample 


The provinces fometimes known as the new kingdom of Granada, is 
entirely an inland country of great ext' c. _ This unportnnt addition 
was made to the dominions of rfpair .' ' ut liieyear 15^6, bv Scbaitian 
deBenalcazaraudGonzaloXime:.- vIcQucfada, two of thebraveft and 

■* Civcdo y Bagnos Hid. dc Venezuela, p. i r, Sic. 


moft accompliflied officers employed in theconqueft of America. Tiic 
former, who commanded at that time in Quito, attacked it from the 
fouth ; the latter made his invnfion from Santa Martha on the north. 
As the original inhabitants of this region were farther advanced in im- 
provement than any people in America but the Mexicans and Peruvians, 
they defended thcmfelves wich great refolution and good conduct. 
Theabilites and perfeverancc of Benalcazar and Quefada furmounted 
all oppofition, though not without encountering many dangers, and 
reduced the country into the form of a Spaniih province. 

The provinces are fo far elevated above the level of the fea, that 
though they approach almoft to the equator, the climate is remark- 
ably temperate. The fertility of the va'.lies is not inferior to thofe 
of the richeft dillricts in America, and the higher grounds yield 
gold and precious ftones of various kinds. It is not by digging into 
the bowels of tne earth that this gold is found, it is mingled with 
the foil near the furfact-, and feparated from it by repeated wafliing 
with water: this operation is cjrried on wholly by negro flaves ; for 
though the chill fubterranean air has been difcovered, by experience, 
to be fo fatal to them, that they cannot be employed with advantage 
in the deep filver mines, they are more capable of performing the 
other fpecies of labour than Indir.ns. As the natives are exempt 
trom that fervice, which has wafted their race fo rapidly in other 
parts of America, the country is ftill remarkably populous. Some 
diftrifts) yield gold with a profufion no lefs wonderful than iiTthe vale 
of Cineguilla, and it is often found in large pepitas, or grains, which 
manifeff the abundance in which it is produced. On a rifing ground 
near Pamplona, fingle labourers have collected in a day what was 
equal in value to a thoufand pefos. A late governor of Santa Fe 
brought with him to Spain a lump of pure gold, eftimatcd to be 
worth feven hundred and forty pounds fterling. This, which is per- 
haps the largeft and fineli: fpecimen ever found in the new world, is 
now depofiLed in the royal cabinet of Madrid. But without founding 
any calculation on what is rare and extraordinary, the value of the 
gold ufually colle(51ed in this country, particularly in Popayan and 
Choco, is of confiderable saiount. Its towns are populous and 
flourifliing. The number of inhabitants in almoft every part of the 
country daily increafes ; cultivation and induftry of various kinds 
begin to be encouraged, and to profper ; a conliderable trade is car- 
ried on with Carthagena, the produce of the mines and other 



commodities being conveyed down the great river of St. Magdalew 
to that city. On another quarter there is a communication with the 
Atlantic by the river Orinoco ; but the country which ftretche^ 
along its banks towards the eaft is little known, and imperfedly oc» 
eupied by the Spaniards. 


( '37 ) 


E R U. 

ERU is fituated between the equator and 25° fouth latitude, and 
60° and 81' weft longitude ;* its length is eighteen hundred miles, 
and its breadth, according to feme authors, three hundred and 
ninety, and others fix hundred f miles ; but the lateft and moft au- 
thentic accounts ftate it at about five hundred. It is bounded on the 
north by Terra Firma, on the weft by the Pacific ocean, on the 
Ibuth by Chili, and on the eaft by the mountains called tlie Andes. 
The bounds of our work will not permit us to enter into the ancient 
hiftory of this country before its conqueft by the Spaniards ; we can, 
therefore, only in brief oblerve, that the empire of Peru, at the time 
it was fubdued, extended along the South fea, from the river of 
Emeralds to Chili, and on the land fide to Popayan, according to 
fome geographers. It contained within its extent that famous chaia 
of mountains which rifes in the Terra Magellanica, and is gradually 
loft in Mexico, in order to unite, as it fliould feem, the fouthern parts 
of America with the northern. 

It is now divided into three grand divifions or audiences: t. 
Quito; 2. Lima, or Los Reyes; and, 3. Los Chaecos. As 
to its climate, mines, foil and produce, they differ greatly in dif- 
(erent parts of the country. 


The extcnfive province of Quito is bounded on the north by Po- 
payan, and includes a part of that government; alfo by Santa Fe de 

* The compilers of the EiirvcJopneJia BiitannJca ft:\re the fitua'ion of Peru be- 
tween I deg. 40 min. north, and 26 deg. 10 min. fouth latitude, and 56 and 81 de^- weit 
longitude, and make iti length eighteen hunirc-d and its breadth, as above, three hundred 
and ninety miles. 

f Guthrie. 

VoL.iV. T Y^o-r.^i 


Bogota ; on the fouth by the governments of Piura and Chachapoy4Jf 
on the eaft it extends over the whole government of Maynas and th« 
river of the Amazons to the meridian, which divides the Spanifli 
from the Portuguefe dominions; and on the weft it is bounded by 
the South fea j extending, according to Antonio dc Ulloa, fix hun- 
dred leagues in length, and about two hundred in its greateft 
breadth ; but this greatly exceeds the computation of all other geo- 
graphers. He however obferves, that it mull be owned a great part 
of thofe vafl: dominions are either inhabited by nations of Indians, or 
have not hitherto been fufficiently peopled by the Spaniards, if in-« 
deed they had been thoroughly known ; and that all the parts that 
can properly be faid to be peopled, and adually fubjeft to the Spanlfli 
government, are thofe intercepted by the two Cordilleras of the 
Andes, which, in eomparifon to the extent of the country, may be 
termed a ftreet or lane, fifteen leagues, or fometimes more, from 
eaft to weft ; to this muft be added feveral detached governments, 
fcparated by the very extenfive traits inhabited by free Indians. 

The climate of Quito diifers from all othei s in the fame parallel, 
{\nce even in the center of the torrid zone, or although under the 
equinodial^ the heat is not only very tolerable, but even in fomc 
places the cold is painful ; while others enjoy all the advantages of 
a perpetual fpring, the fiekls being conftantly covered with verdure, 
and enamelled with flowers of the moft lively colours. The mild- 
nefs of the climate, free from the extremes of heat and cold, and 
the conftant equality of the day and night, render this country, 
which, from its fituation, might be thought to be parched by the 
conftant heat of the inn, and Icarcely inhabitable, both pleafant and 
fertile ; for Nature has here dilpcnfed her bleffings v;ith fo liberal a 
hand, that this country in feveral refpefta furpafles thofe of the tem- 
perate zunes, where the vicilfitudes of winter and fummer, and the 
change from heat to cold, caufe the extremes of both to be more 
fenfibly felt. However, in different parts of the country, the air is 
very different ; in one part are mountains of a ftupendous height 
and magnitude, with their fnmmits covered with fnow. The plains 
are temperate, the valleys hot, and, according to the high or low 
fituation of the country, are found all the variety of gradations in 
temperature poflible to be conceived between the extremes of heat 
and cold. 

Quito, the capital, in o* 13' fouth latitude, and 77° 50' weft ten- 
jjitudfe fioiK Greenwich, is fo happily fituated, that neither heat nor 


©F PERU. 139 

•old are troublefome, though boih may be felt in its neighbour- 
hood ; and what renders this equality more delightful is, that it is 
conftant throughout the whole year, the difference between the fea- 
fons being fcarce perceptible. Indeed the mornings are cool, the 
remainder of the day warm, and the nights of an agreeable tem- 

The winds, which arc pure and falubrious, blow for the moft part 
from north to fouth, but never with any violence, though they fome- 
times fliift their quarters, but without any regard to the feafon of 
the year. Such fignal advantages refulting from tiie climate, foil, 
and afpeft of this countrj-, would be fufticient to render it the moft 
enviable fpot upon earth, as it is fuppofed to be the moft elevated, 
if, whilll enjoying thefe delights, the inhabitants were not haralfed 
by terror, and expofed to continual danger ; for here tremendous 
tempefts of thunder and lightning prevail, which are fufticient to 
appal the ftouteft heart ; whilft earthquakes frequently fprcad uni- 
verfal apprehenfions, and fometimes bury cities in ruins. 

The diftinaion of winter and fummer confifts in a very minute 
difference ; the interval between the month of September and thofa 
of April, May or June, is here called the winter feafon, and the 
other months compofe the fummer. In the former feafon the rain 
chiefly prevails, and in the latter the inhabitants frequently enjoy 
whole days of fine weather ; but whenever the rains are difcontinued 
for above a fortnight, the inhabitants are in the utmoft confterna- 
tion, and public prayers are offered \ip for their return. On the 
other hand, when they continue a ftiort time without intermilHon, 
the like fears prevail, and the churches are again crowded with fup- 
plicants to obtain fine weather ; for a long drought produces dange- 
rous difeafes, and a continual rain, without intervals of fiinfldne, 
deftroys the fruits of the earth. The city of Quito, however, en- 
joys one peculiar advantage in being free from mulketoes and other 
troublefome infefts, fuch as fleas and venomous reptiles, except the 
nigiia or pique, which is a very fmall infe<5t fliaped like a flea, but 
hardly vifible to the fight. 

The fertility of the foil here is incredible, for the fruits and 
beauties of the feveral feafons are vifible at the lame time ; and the 
curious European obferves with a pleafing admiration, that while 
&m€ herbs of the field are fading, others of the fame kind are 
ipringing up ; while fome flowers lofe their beauty, others blow to 
coiitinue the enanaellcd profpe<^ ; thus, when the fruits of the trees 

T * have 


have attained their maturity, and the leaves begin to change their 
colour, frefli leaves bloflbrn, and fruits are feen in their proper grada- 
tion, in fize and ripenefs on the fame tree. The fameinceffantlertility 
is confpicuous in the corn, both reap'iig and fovving being carried on 
at the fame time ; fo that the declivities of the neighbouring hills 
exhibit all the beauties of the four feafons in one aflemblage. Though 
all this is generally feen, yet there is a fettled time for the grand 
harvefl: : yet fometimes the mod: favourable feafon for fowing in one 
place is a month or two after that of another, though their dlftance 
does not exceed three or four leagues. Thus in different fpots, and 
fometimes in one and the fame, fovving and reaping are peiformed 
throughout the whole year, the forwardnefs or retardment naturally 
nrifing irom the different fituations, fuch as mountains, riling 
grounds, plains and valleys ; and the temperature being different in 
each, the beft times for performing the feveral operations of hulbandry 
muft alfo differ. 

The chirimnya is confidered as one of the moft delicious fruits in 
the world ; its dimenfions are various, being from one to five 
inches in diameter ; its figure is imperfedly round, flatted towards 
the (talk, where it forms a kind of navel, but all the other parts are 
nearly circular : it is covered with a thin foft fliell, which adheres fo 
clofely to the pulp as not to be feparted from it without a knife ; the 
outward coat is green, variegated with prominent veins, forming 
all over it a kind of net-work : the pulp is white, and contains a 
large quantity of juice refembling honey, of a fweet taile, mixed 
with a gentle acid of a moft exquifite flavour. The feeds are formed 
in feveral parts of the pulp, and are fomewhat fiat. The tree is 
high and tufted, the fl:em large and round, but with fome inequali- 
ties, full of elliptic leaves, terminating in a point. The bloflTom 
differs little from the colour of the leaves, which is a darkifli green ; 
and though far from being beautiful, is remarkable for its incpmpa- 
rable fragrance. 

The granadilla in its fliape refembles an hen's egg, but is larger ; 
the out fide of the fliell is fmooth, glofly, and of a faint carnatioa 
colour, and the infide white and foft ; the flicll contains a vifcous 
liquid fubftance full of very fmall and delicate grains, lefs hard than 
thofo of the pomegranate. This medullary fubftance is feparated 
from the fiieil by a fine and tranfparent membrane. Its fruit has a 
delightful fvveetnefs blended with acidity, very cordial and refrefliing, 
and fo whoiefomej that there is no danger of eating to cxcefs. 


OF PERU. 141 

The frutiila, or Penivlan ftrawbeny, is very different from that 
of Europe in fize; for though they are here generally not above 
an inch in length, they arc much larger in other parts of Peru ; but 
their tafte, though juicy, and not unpalatable, is not equal to ihofc 
in Europe. 

The country is obferved to abound more in women than men, 
which is the more remarkable, as thofe caull-s '.vhich induce men to 
leave their country, as travelling, eommer^e, and war, naturally 
bring over more nic-n from Europe than women. But there are many 
families in vv'hlch tiiere are a number of daughter?, without one fon 
among them. The women enjoy a better ftate of health than the 
men, which may be owing in fome meafure to the climate, but more 
particularly to the early intem|yerance and volupcuoufncfs of the 
other fex. 

The Creoles are well made, of a proper ftature, and of a lively 
and agreeable countenance. The Mefcizos are alio in general well 
made, often taller than the ordinary lize, very robuft, and have an 
agreeable air. The Indians, both men and women, are commonly 
low of ftatuie, though ftrong and well proportioned ; but more na- 
tural defeats are to be found among them than in any of the reft. 
Some are remarkably fliort, fome ideots, dumb, or blind. Their 
hair is generally thick and long, which they wear loofe on their 
(houl.lers ; but the Indian women plait theirs behind with a riband, 
and cut that before a little above the eyebrows, from one ear to the 
other. The greatcfc difgrace that can be offered to an Indian of 
either fex is to cut off their hair ; for whatever corporal puniflimcnt 
their matters think proper to inflict on tliem, they bear with patience; 
but this affront they never forgive, and accordingly the government 
has interpofed, and limited tliis puniflunent to the moll enormous 
crimes. The colour ofthe hair is generally a deep black ; it is lank, 
harfli, and as coarfe as that of a horfe. On the contrary, the male 
Meftizos, in order to diftinguifli themfelvcs from the Indians, cutoff 
their hair, but the females do not adopt that cuftom. 

The Meftizos in general wear a blue cloth, niMruifaftured in this 
country ; but though they are the loweil clafs of the Spaniards, they 
are very ambitious of diftinguifliing themfelves as fuch, either by the 
colour or fafliipn of the clothes they wear. 

The Meftizo women affedl to drefs in the fame manner as the Spa- 
niffi, though they cannot equal the ladies in the richnefs of their 
fluffs. The meaner fort wearno flioes, but, like the men of the fame 
rank, go barefooted. 



The drefsofthe Indians confifls of white cotton drawers, whick 
hang down to the calf of their leg, where they are loofe, ahd edged 
\^•ith a lace fuitable to the ftuif. The ufe of a fhirt is fupplied by a 
black cotton frock, made in the form of a fack, with three openings 
at the bottom, one in the middle for the head, and others at the cor- 
ners for the arms ; thns covering their naked bodies down to their 
knees : over this is a ferge cloak, with a hole in the middle for 
putting the head through, and a hat made by the natives. This is 
the general drefs, which they never lay afide, even while they fleep ; 
and they have no additional cloathing for their legs or feet. The In- 
dians, who have acquired fome fortune, particularly the barbers and 
phlebotomifts, diflinguifli thtmfelves from their countrymen by the 
iinenefs of their drawers, and by wearing a fliirt, which, though 
without fleeves, has a lace four or five fingers in breadth, fattened 
round like a kind of ruff or band. They are fond of filver or gold 
buckles to their flioes, though they wear no (lockings, and inftead 
of a mean ferge cloak, wear one of fine cloth, which is often adorned 
with gold or filver lace. 

There are two kinds of drelTes worn by the Indian women, made 
in the fame plain manner with thofe worn by the men in general, the 
whole confifling of a fliort petticoat and a veil of Arnerican baize. 
But the drefs of the lowell clafs of Indian women is only a bag of the 
fame make and ftuif as that of the meji, which they fallen on their 
Ihoulders with two large pins ; it reaches down to the calf of the leg, 
and is faftencd round the waiil with a kind of girdle. Inftead of a 
veil, they wear about the neck a piece of the fame coarfe f^ufF, dyed 
black, but their arms and legs are naked. 

The people have diflies unknown in Europe, but are particularly 
fond of cheeft, and have excellent butter in the neighbourhood of 
Quito. Sweetmeats are very much admired. 

Rum is commonly drank here by perfosis of all ranks, but theJF 
favourite liquor is brandy. The diforders arifing from the exceffivc 
ufe of ipirituous liquors are chiefly feen among the Meftizos ; and the 
lower clafs of women, both among the Creoles and the Meftizos, are 
alfo extremely addifted to the fame fpecies of debauchery. 

Another liquor ranch ufed in this country is mate, which is made 
of an herb known in all thefe parts of America by the name para- 
guay, as being the produce of that country. Some of it is put into a 
caiabafli tipped with filvei', called here mate, with lugar aijd fome 


OF PERU* 143 

♦ckl water. After it lias continued there fome time, the calabaflx i^ 
filled with boihng water, and they drink the h^.[\^Oi• through a pipe 
fixed in the calabafli. It isalfo ufual to fqueeze into the liquor a finall 
quantity of the juice of lemons or Seville oranges, mixed with fome 
perfumes from odoriferous flowers. This is their iiiual drink in the 
morning falling, and many alfo ufe it at their evening regale. The 
manner of drinking it appears veiy indelicate, the whole company 
taking it fucceffively through the fame pipe, it being cari-icd fevcral 
times round the company till all are fatisfied. This, among the Creoles, 
is the higheft enjoyment ; fo that when they travel, they never fail to 
carry with them a fufficient quantity of it, and till they have take*^ 
their dofe of mate they never eat. 

The vice of gaming is here carried to aa extravagant height, to 
the ruin of many families, fome lofing their ftock in trade, others 
the very clothes from their backs, and afterward thofc belonging to 
their wives, which they hazard, ftimulated by the hope of recovering 
their own. 

The common people, the Indians, and even the domcftics, arc 
greatly addidlcd to itealing. The rvleiHzos, though arrant cowards, 
do not want aiidacit) in this way ; for though they will nor venture 
to attack any one in the ftrect, it is a common practice to fnatch otf 
a perfon's hat, and immediately feek their lafety in flight. This ac- 
quifition is fomctimes of confiderable vahie ; the hats worn by per- 
fons of rank, and even by the wealthy citizens, when drefled, 
being of vhiieJjbeaver, worth fiffeen dollars, befide the hatband of 
gold or filver l^nk faliened with a gold buckle fet with diamonds or 

In Quito, and all the towns and villages of its province, different 
dialefts are fpoken, Spanilh being no kfs common than the Inga, 
the language oi the country. The Creoles ufe the latter as much as the 
former, but both are confiderably adukerated by borrowed words or 
expreffions. The firlf language generally fpoken by children is the 
Inga, for the nurfes being Indians, many of them do not underftand 
a word of Spanifli, and thus they afterward learn a jargon compo^l^d 
of both languages. 

The fnmptuous manner of performing the laft offices for the dead, 
demonftrates how far the power of habit is capable of prevailing over 
reafon and prudence, for their ollentation is fo great in this parti- 
cular, that many families of credit are ruined by prepofteroufly en- 
deavouring to excel oiUers.^ and the people here may be faid to toil 



and fcheme lo by up wealth, to enable their fucceflbrs to lavifli ho- 
nours upon a body inler.fible oi' ail pageantry. 

The commerce of the province of Quito is chiefly carried on by 
Europeans fettled here, and oilicrs vfhooccaI:ona]ly arrive. The ma- 
nufactures of this province are only cottons, fome white and flriped 
baize, and cloths, which meet with a good market at Lima, for fup- 
piying the inward provinces of Peru. The returns are made partly 
in Clver, and partly in fringes made of gold and lilver thread, and 
wine, brandy, oil, copper, tin, lead, and quickfilver. On the ar- 
rival of the galleons at Carthagena, theie traders relort thither to 
purchaie European goods, which, at their return, they confign to 
their correfpondents all over the province. The coafts of New- 
Spain fiipply this province with indigo, of wb'r,h there is a very large 
confumptioa at the manufa£lure.% blue being univerfally the colour 
which this people adopt for their ajrparel. They alfo import, by 
way of Guayaquila, iron and itcel, both from Europe and the coaft 
of Guatimala. 

The difpofition of the Indians in the province of Qnito is ex- 
tremely remarkable, and they appear to have no refemblance to the 
pc(;ple found there by ihofe who firfc difcovered the country. They 
at prefent poffefs a tranquillity not to be diftu; bed either by fortunate 
or unfortunate events, in their mean apparel they are as contented 
as a prince clolhed in the moft fplendid robes. They fliew the 
famedifregard to riches ; and even the authority and grandeur withia 
their reach is fo little the object of their ambition, th^t to all appear- 
ance it feems to be the fame to an Indian whether he be created 
an alcaide, or obliged to perfoim the office of a common execu- 

Their (loth is fo great, that fcarccly any thing can induce them to 
work. Whatever, therefore, is necelFary to be done, is left to the 
Indian women, who are much more adive; they fpin and make the 
half fllirts and drawers which form the only apparel of their huf- 
bands ; they cook the provifions, grind barley, and brew the beer 
called chica, while the hufband fits fqnatting on his hams, the ufual 
poUyre of the Indian?, looking at his bufy wife. The only domeftic 
fervice they do is to plough their little fpot of land, which is fovved 
by the wife. V\ !;en they arc once feated on their hams, no reward 
can induce them to flir ; fo that if a traveller has loft his way, and 
haj)pens to come to one of their cottages, they charge their wives to 
lay -that they arc not at home. Should the paffcnger alight and enter 
* the 

bF PERUi 145 

the cottage, the Indian would ftill be fafe, for liaving no light but 
what comes through a hole in the door, he could not be dil'covered ; 
and (hould the ftranger even fee the Indian, neither entreaties nor re- 
wards would prevail on him to ftir a ftep with him. 

They are lively only in parties of plealure, rejoicings, entertain- 
ments, and efpecially dancing ; but in all thefe the liquor muft circu- 
late brilkly, and they continue drinking till they are entirely deprived 
both of fenfe and motion. 

k is remarkable that the Indian women, whether maids or mar- 
ried, and Indian young men before they are of an age to contracft 
matrimony, are never guilty of this vice ; it being a maxim among 
them, that drunkennefs is the privilege of none but mailers of fami- 
lies who, when they are unable to take care of themfelves, have others 
to take care of them. 

The women prefent the chicha * to their hufbandsjn calabaflies, 
till their fpirits are raifed,- then one plays on a pipe and tabor, while 
others dance; Some of the bed voices among the Indian women 
fmg fongs in their own language, and thofe who do not dance, fquat 
down in the ufual pofture till it comes to their turn. When tired 
with intemperance, they all lie down together, without regarding 
whether they be near the wife of another or their own lifter or,daugh- 
ter. Thefe feftivities fometimes continue three or four days, till the 
prieft coming among them, throws away all the chicha, and difperfes 
the Indians^ left they fhould procure more. 

Their funerals are likewife folemnifed with exceffive drinking^ 
The houfe is filled with jugs of chicha, for the folace of the mourn- 
ers and other vifitors ; the latter even go out into the ftreets, and in- 
vite all of their nation who happen to pafs by, to come in and 
drink to the honour of the deceafed. This ceremony lafts four or 
five days, and fometimes more, ftrong liquor being their fupreme 

The Indians in the audience of Quito are faid to aiTr contrary to all 
•ther nations in their marriages, for they never make choice of 3 
woman who has not been tirft enjoyed by others, which they confi- 

* This is a liquor made from maizi Ly the following procefs : The maize, after 
being foaked in water till it begin to grow, is dried in the fun, then parched a little, an4 
at laft ground. The flour, after it has been well kneaded, is put with water into a large 
vefTel, and left for two or three days to ferment. Its taftc is nearly that of the moft indif- 
ferent kind of cyder. It is arefrcfhing, nourilhirg; and aperitive liquor, but it will 
iiot keep above eight days without turning four. 

Vol. IV. U der 


der as a certain indication of her perfonal attraftions. After a young 
:nan has made choice of a woman, he afks her of her father, and hav' 
ing obtained his confent, they begin to cohabit together as man and 
wife, and ailill the father-in-IAw in cultivating the land. At the end of 
three or four months, and frequently of a year, the hufband leaves 
' his bride or wife, without any ceremony, and perhaps expoftulates 
with his father-in-law for endeavoui ing to deceive him, by impofing 
upon him his daughter, whom nobody clfe had thought worthy of 
making a bedfellow. But if no difguft arifes in the man on this ac- 
count, or any other, after pafTing three or four months in this com- 
merce, which they call amanarfe, or to habituate one's felf, they 
then marry. This cuftom is flill very common, though the whole 
body of the clergy have ufed all their endeavours to put a ftop to it. 
Accordingly they always abfolve them of that fin before they give 
them the nuptial benediftion. 

It has been obferved, that the dependencies of the jurifdiftions of 
Quito are feated between the two Cordilleras of the Andes, and that the 
air is more or lefs cold, and the ground more or lefs fterile, accord- 
ing to the height of the mountains. Thefe barren tracks are called 
defu ts J for though all the Cordilleras are dry, fome are much more 
fo than others, and the continual faow and frofts render fome parts of 
them incapable of producing a fingle plant, and confequently they 
are uninhabitable by man or beaft. 

Some of thefe mountains, which appear to have their bafes refting 
on other mountains, rife to a moft allonifliing height, and reaching 
far above the clouds, are here, although in the midft of the torrid 
zone, covered with perpetual fnow. From cxperiiTients made with 
a barometer on the mountain ofCotopaxi, it appeared that its fum- 
mit was elevated fix thoufand two hundred and fifty-two yards 
above the furface of the fea, fomething above three geographical 
^uiles, which greatly exceeds the hei^dit of any other mountains in 
the known world. 

Cotopaxi became a volcano about the time when tl^e Spaniards firft 
arrived in this country. A new eruption happened in 1743, which 
had been for fome days preceded by a coiuinual interior rumbling 
noife ; after which an aperture was made in its as alfo three 
others near the middle of its declivity ; thefe parts, when tlie erup* 
tion commenced, were buried under prodigious nialVes ot fnow. 
The ignited fubftances which were ejefted, being mingled with a 
tonliderable quantity of fnow and icr, melting ainidft the flames, 


OF PERU. 147 

*-erc carried down with fuch amazing rapidity, that the plain from 
Callo to Latacunga was overflowed, and all the hoiifes, with their 
wretched inhabitants, were fwept away in one general and inftantane- 
ous deftriK^ion. The river of Latacunga was the receptacle of this 
dreadful flood, till becoming fwoUen above its banks, the torrent 
rolled over the adjacent country, continuing to fweep away houfes and 
cattle, and rendered the land near the town of the lame name as the 
river, one vatl lake. Here, however, the inhabitants had fulllcient 
warning to fave their lives by flight, and retreated to a more elevated 
fpot at fome diftance. During three days the volcano cjetled cinders,- 
while torrents of lava with melted ice and fnow poured down the 
udes of the mountain. The eruption continued for feveral days 
longer, accompanied with terrible roarings of the wind, rufliing 
through the craters which had been opened. At length all was 
jquiet, and neither fmoke nor fire were to be feen ; until in May, 
1744, the flames forced a paflage through feveral other parts'' 
on the fides of the mountain ; fo that in clear nights the flame, 
being reflefted by the tranfparent ice, exhibited a very grand and 
beautiful illumination. On the 13th of November following, it 
,eje<fted fuch prodigious quantities of fire and lava, that an in- 
undation, equal to the former, foon cnfued, and th.c inhabit 
tants of the town of Latacunga for fome time gave thejTifelves over 
for loft. 

The moft fouthcrn mountains of the Cordilleras is that of Mecas 
or Sangay, which is of a prodigious height, and the far greateft part 
of it covered with fnow; yet from its lummit ifl'ues a continual fire, 
attended vvith explofions which a;e plainly heard at forty leagues difr 
tance. The country adjacent to this volcano is entirely barren, be- 
ing covered with cinders ejefted from its mouth. In this mountain 
rifes the river Sangay, which being joined by the Upnno, forms the 
Payra, a large nver which difcharges itfelf into the Maranon. 

Pichincha, though famous for its great height, is one thoufand tvo 
hundred and feventy-eight yards lower than the perpendicular height 
of Cotopaxi, and was formerly a volcano, but the mouth or crater ori 
one of its fides is now covered with fand and calcined matter, fo that 
at prefent neither fmoke nor fire iflues from it. When Don George 
Juan and Don Antonio de Ulloa were ftationed on it for the purpofe 
ef making aftronomical obfervations, they found the cold on the top 
of this mountain extremely intenfe, the wind violent, and they were 
frequently involved in fo thick a fog, or, in other words, a cloud, that 

U ^ an 


an objeft at fix or eight paces diftance was fcarcely difcerniblc. The 
air grew clear by the clouds moving nearer to the earth, and on al| 
l;des furrounding the mountain to a vaft diftance, reprefenting the 
fea with the mountain ftandinglike an ifland in the center. When this 
happened, they heard the dreadful noife of the tempefts that dif- 
charged themfelves on Quito and the neighbouring country. They 
faw the lightning iirne from the clouds, and heard the thunder roll 
f:\i beneath them. While the lower parts were Involved in tempefts 
f f thunder and rain, they enjoyed a delightful ferenity ; the wind 
was a-bared, the fky clear, and the erilivening rays of the fun mode- 
rated the feverity of the cold. But when the clouds rofe, their thick- 
nefs rendered refpiration difficult; fnow and hail fell continually, 
and the wind returned with all its violence, fo that it was impoflible 
(entirely to overcome the fear of being, together with their hut, 
blown down the precipice on whofe edge it was built, or of being 
buried in it by the conftant accumulations of ice and fnow. Their 
fears were likewife increafed by the fall of enormous fragments of 
rocks. Though the fmalleft crevice vifible in their hut was flopped, 
the wind was fo piercing that it penetrated through ; and though the 
hut was fmall, crowded with inhabitants, and had feveral lamps con- 
ftantly burning, the cold was fo great, that each individual was obli- 
gedto have a chafirag-difti of coals, and fevera] men were conftantly 
employed every morning to remove the fnow which fell in the night. 
By the feveritieg of fuch a climate their feet were fwelled, and fo 
tender, that walking was attended with extreme pain, their hands co- 
vered with chilblains, and their lips fo fwelled and chopt, that every 
motion in fpeaking drew [jlood. 


The next dlvifion of Peru is the audience of Lima, which is 
bounded on the north by Quito ; on the eaft, by the Cordilleras of 
the Andes ; on the fouth, by the audience of Los Charcos ; and on 
the weft, by the Pacific ocean ; it being about feven hundred and fe- 
venty miles in length frorn nortl] to fouth, but of an unequal 

The climate and foil of this country is uncommonly various ; in 
fome places it is ex.ceedingly hot, in others linlupportably cold, and 
jn the city of Lima, where rain never falls, it is always temperate. 
The feafons vary within the compafs of a few miles, and in certain 


OF PERU, 149 

parts of the audience, all the viciffitudes of weather are experienced 
in twenty-four hours. It is extremely remarkable that no rains fall, or 
rivers flow on the fea coafts, though the country is refreflisd*by thick 
fogs, and tlie heat abated by denfe clouds that never condenfe into 
iliowers. This phenomenon has drawn the attention of many natu- 
ralifls, without their being able fatisfaftorily to account for it. 

Spring begins towards the clofe of the year, that is, about the en4 
©f November or the beginning of December, when the vapours whicU 
fill the atmofphere during the winter fubfide, and the fun, to the 
great joy of the inhabitants, again appears, and the country then be- 
gins to revive, which, during the abience of his rays, had continued 
in a ftate of languor. This is fucceeded by fummer, which, though 
Jiot from the perpendicular dire6lion of the fun's rays, is far from 
being infupportable ; the heat, which, indeed, would othervvife be 
cxceffive, being moderated by the fouth winds, which always blow 
at this feafon, though with no great force. Winter begins at the lat- 
ter end of June or the beginning of July, and continues till Novem- 
ber or December, when the fouth wind begins to blow llronger, and 
to produce a certain degree of cold, not, indeed, equal to that in the 
countries where the ice and fnow are known, but fo keen that the 
light drelTes are laid by, and cloth or other warm fluffs worn. Du- 
ring the winter the earth is covered with fo thick a fog, as totally t9 
intercept the rays of the fun ; and the winds, by blowing under the 
fiielter of the fog, retain the particles they contradled in the frozen 
zone. In this feafon only the vapours diffolve into a very fmall dew, 
which every where equally moiftens the earth ; by which means all 
the hills, which during the other parts of the year otfer nothing to 
the fight but rocks and waftes, are clothed with verdure and enamel- 
led with flowers of the mofl beautiful colours. Thefe dews never 
fall in fuch quantities as to impair the roads or incommode the tra- 
veller ; a very thin fluff will not foon be wet through, but the conti- 
nuance of the mifts during the whole winter, without being exhaled 
\iy the fun, fertilizes every part of the country. 

Lima is as free from tempeils as from rain, fo that thofe of the in- 
habitants who have neither vifited the mountains nor travelled intojother 
parts, are abfolute ftrangers to thunder and lightning, and are there- 
fore extremely terrified when they firft hear the former, or fee the 
latter. But it is very remarkable, that what is here entirely unknown, 
^lould be fo common thu'ty leagues to the eatl of Lima ; it being no 
3 farther 


farther to the mountains, where violent rains and tempefts of thunder 
and lightning are as li-eqnentas at Quito. 

But though the capital is freed from the terror of thefe tempefts, 
it is fubjed to what is much more dreadful. Earthquakes happen 
here fo frequen ly, that the inhabitants are under continual appre- 
henfions (f being, from their fuddennefs and violence, buried in the 
ruins of their own houfes ; yet thefe earthquakes, though fo fudden, 
have their prefaces, one of the princijial of which is a rumbling noife 
In the bowels of the earth, about a minute before the ftiocks are felt, 
that icems to pervade all the adjacent fubterraneous part ; this is fol- 
lowed by difmal bowlings of the dogs, who feem to preface the ap- 
proaching danger. The beafts of burden palling the fireets ftop, and 
by a natural inftinfl fpread open their legs, the better to fecure them- 
felves from falling. On thefe portents the terrified inhabitants fly 
from their houfes into the ftreets with fiich precipitation, that if it 
happens in the night, they appear quite naked ; the urgency of the 
danger at once banifliing ail fenfe of delicacy or fliame. Thus the 
ftreets exhibit fuch odd and lingular figures as might afford matter of 
diverlion, were it poffible to be diverted in fo terrible a moment. 
This Hidden concourfe is accompanied with the cries of children 
waked out of their fleep, blended with the lamentations of the wo- 
men, whofe agonifing prayers to the flunts increafe the common fear 
and confufion. The men are alfo too much aftedted to refrain fronj 
giving vent to their terror, fo that the whole city exhibits a dreadful 
fcene of conflernation and horror. 

The earthquakes that have happened at the capital are very nume- 
rous. The firft fince the eftablifliment of the Sj)aniards was in 1582, 
but the damage v'vas much leis confiderable than in fome ofthefuc- 
ceeding. Six years after, Lima was agairi vifited by another earth- 
quake, fo dreadful, that it is ftili folemnly commemorated every 
year. In i6og another happened, which overturned many houfes. 
On the 27th of November, 1630, fuch prodigious damage was done 
in the city by an earthquake, that in acknowledgment of its not hav- 
ing been entirely demoliflied, a feltival on that aay is annually cele- 
brated. Twenty-four years after, on the 3d of November, the moll 
llately edifices in the city, and a great number of houfes, were de- 
ilroyed by an earthquake, but the inhabitants retiring, few of them 
perilhed. Another dreadful one happened in 1678; but one of the 
mod terrible was on the 28ch of 0£lober, 1687. It began at four in 
the jiiornin^ and deltro cd many of the fiiicll public buildings and 


OF PERU. 151 

lioiifes, in which a great number oF the inhabitants perirtied ; but 
this was little more than a prelude to what toUowed, for two hours 
after the fhock returned with fuch impetuous concuffions, that all 
was laid in ruins, and the inhabitants felt themfehes happy in being 
only fpecftators of the general do. aftation, by having favcd their 
lives, though with the lofs of all their property. During this fccond 
fliock, the fea retiring confideribly, and then returning in moun- 
tainous waves, entirely overwhelmed Callao, which is at five miles 
diftance from Lima, and all the adjacent country, together with the 
Miiferable inhabitants. From that time, fix earthquakes have hap- 
pened at Lima previous to that of 1 746. This laft was on the aSth of 
Odober, at half an hour after ten at night, when the conculfions be- 
gan with fuch violence, that in little more than three minutes, the 
greatell part, if not all the buildings in the city, were delhoyed, bu- 
rying under their ruins thofe inhabitants who had not made fufficient 
hafte into the ftreets and fquares, the only places of iafety. At length 
the horrible efFefts of the firft fliock csafed, but the tranquillity was of 
fliort duration, the concuffions fvviftly fucceL-ding each other. The 
fort of Callao alfo funk into ruins; but v/hat it fuffered from the earth- 
quake in its building was inconfidcrabie, when compared to the 
dreadful cataftrophe which followed ; tor the fea, as is ufual on 
fuch occafions, receding to a confideiable diftance, returned in moun- 
tainous waves, foaming with the violence of the agitation, and fud- 
denly buried Callao and the neighbouring country in its flood. This, 
however, was not entirely effefted by the firft fwell of the waves, 
for the fea retiring farther, returned with ftill greater impetuofity, 
and covered both the walls and other buildings of the place ; fo that 
what even had efcaped the firft inundation, was totally*x)verwhelmcd 
by thofe fucceeding mountainous waves. Twenty-three fliips and 
veffels, great and fmail, were then in the harbour, nineteen of which 
were funk, and the other four, among which was a frigate named St. 
Ferniin, were carried by the force of the waves to a confiderable dif- 
tance up^the country. This terrible inundation and earthquake ex- 
tended to other parts on the coal^, and feveral towns underwent the 
lame fate as the city of Lima, where the number of perfons who pe- 
riflied within two days after it began, amounted, according to the bo- 
dies found, to one thoufand three hundred, befides the maimed and 
wounded, many of whom lived only a fliort time in great 


t£i General description? 

The country of Lima enjoys great fertility, producing all kinds of 
grain, and a prodigious variety of fruit. Here induttry and art fup'» 
ply that moifture which the clouds vvithholdi The ancient Incas of 
Peru caufed fmall canals tOi be formed, in order to conduft the waters 
of the rivers to every part of the country. The Spaniards, finding 
thefe ufeful works executed to their hands, had only to keep them in 
order, and by thefe are watered fpacious fields of barley, large mea> 
dows, plantations, vineyards and gardens, all yielding uncommoa 
plenty. Lima differs from Quito, where the fruits of the earth have 
ho determined feafonj for here the harveft is gathered in, and the 
trees drop their leaves in the proper feafon. 

Although the fummer here is hot, yet venomous creatures are 
tnikriown 5 and the fame may be faid of the territory called Valles, 
though here are fome ports, as Tumbez and Piura, where the heat 
is almoft as great as that of Guayaquil. This Angularity can there- 
fore proceed from no other caufe than the natural drought of the 

The audience of Lima is divided into four biftioprics, Truxilloji 
Guamanga, Cufco and Arequipa. The diocefe of Truxillo lies to 
the north of the archiepifcopal diocefe of Lima, and like all the 
others is divided into feveral jurifdiftions. The city of Truxillo is 
feated in 8° 6' fouth latitude, in a pleafant fituation, though in a 
iandy foil* 

In the diocefe of Guamanga is a fich quickfilver mine, from which 
the inhabitants of a neighbouring town procure their whole fub- 
fiftence ; the coldnefs of the air in that place checking the growth of 
all kinds of grain and fruit, fo that they are obhged to purchafe 
them from their neighbours. The quickfilver mines wrought here 
fupply all the filver mines in Peru with that neceffary mineral, and 
notwithftaading the prodigious quantities already extradted, no di- 
minution is perceived, 

Cui'co, which gives name to another diocefe, is the mofl ancient city 
in Peru, being of the fame date with the empire of the Incas, and was 
founded by them as the capital of the empire. On the mountain 
contiguous to the north part of the city are the ruins of a famous 
fort built by the Incas, whence it appears, that their defign was to 
indole the whole mountain with a prodigious wall, of fuch con- 
llruftion as to render its afcent ablolutely imprafticable to an enemy, 
in order to prevent all .ipproach to the city. This wall was entirely 
of fjeeftont, and flrongly built, fome of the (tones being of a pro- 



digious magnitude. The city of Cufco is nearly equal to that of 

In this bifhopric are feveral mines of gold and filver that are ex- 
tremely rich. 

The fourth diocefe of the audience of Lima is Arequipn, which 
contains the city of the fame name, one of the largeft in all Peru : 
it is delightfully feated in a plain, the houfes are well-built of ftone, 
and ai'e generally lofty, commodious, finely decorated on the out- 
fide, and neatly fnrniflied within. The temperature of the air is 
extremely agreeable, the cold being never excelfive, nor the heat 
troublefome, fo that the fields are always clothed with verdure, and 
enamelled with flowers, as in a perpetual fpring. But thefe advan- 
tages are allayed by its being frequently expofed to dreadful earth- 
quakes, for by thefe convulfions of Nature it has been four times 
laid in ruins. The city is, however, very populous, and among its 
inhabitants are many noble families. 

In this bifliopric are feveral gold and filver mines, and in fome 
parts are large vineyards, from which confiderable quantities of 
wine and brandy are made. Among the other productions is Guinea 
pepper, in which the jurifdidion of Africa in this diocefe carries on 
a very advantageous trade, the annual produce of thele plantations 
bringing in no lefs than fixty thoufand dollars per annum. The 
pods of this pepper are about a quarter of a yard in length, and 
when gathered are dried in the fun and packed up in bags of niflies, 
each bag containing an aroba or a quarter of a hundred weight, and 
thus they are exported to all parts. Other places of this jurifdielion 
are famous for vaft quantities of large and excellent olives, far ex- 
ceeding the fineft produced in Europe, they being nearly the fize of 

a hen's egg. 


The audience of Charcos, the lafl divifion of Peru, is equal in 
extent to that of Lima, but many of its parts are not fo well inha- 
bited, fome being full of vaft deferts and impenetrable forefls, while 
others have extenfive plains intercepted by the ftupendous height of 
the Cordilleras : the country is inhabited only in fuch partes as are 
free from thole inconveniences. It is bounded on the north by the 
diocefe of Cufco, and reaches fouthward to Buenos Ayres ; on the 
eafl it extends to Brafil ; and on the weft it reaches to the Pacific 
ocean, particularly at Atacama. The remainder of the province 
borders on the kingdom of Chili. 

Vol. IV. X This 


This audience is divided into the archbifliopric of Plata and five 
bifhoprics. We fliall begin with the former. 

The famous mountain of Potofi is known all over the commercial 
world for the immenfe quantity of filver it has produced. The dif- 
covery of this amazing treafurc happened at the commencement of 
the year 1 545, by a mere accident, which we fhall mention after- 
wards. At a fmall diftance from it are the hot medicinal baths, 
called Don Diego, whither fome refort for health and others for 

At the time when the firfl conquefts were made, when emigra- 
tions were mofl frequent, the country of the Incas had a much 
greater reputation for riches than New-Spain, and, in reality, for a 
long time much more coniiderable treafures were brought away 
from it. The delire of partaking of them muft necefTarily draw 
thither, as was really the cafe, a greater number of Caftilians. 
Though almoft all of them went over thither with the hope of re- 
turning to their country to enjoy the fortune they might acquire, 
yet the majority fettled in the colony. They were induced to this 
by the foftnefs of the climate, the faliibrity oF the air, and the good- 
nefs of the provifions. Mexico preiented not the fame advantages, 
and did not give them reafon to expeft fo much independence as a 
land infinitely more remote from the mother country. 

Cufco attra£ted the conquerors in multitudes : they found this 
capital built on a ground that was very irregular, and divided into as 
many quarters as there were provinces in the empire. Each of the 
inhabitants might follow the ufages of his native country, but every 
body was obliged to conform to the vvorfliip eftabliQied by the founder 
of the monarchy. There was no edifice that had any grandeur, 
elegance or convenience, becaufe the people were ignorant of the 
firfl elements of architc£liire. The magnificence of what they 
called the *' palace of the fovcrcign, of the princes of the blood, 
and of the great men of his empire," confilted in the profufion of 
the metals that were laviflied in decorating them. The temple of the 
Sun was diftinguifhed above all other edifices; its walls were incrufted 
or flieathed with gold and filver, ornamented with divers figures, 
and loaded with the idols of all the nations whom the Incas had en- 
lightened and lubdued. 

As it was not a folicitude for their own prefervation which occupied 
the Spaniards at firfl, they had no fooner pillaged the immenfe riches 
which had been amafled at Cufco for four centuries, than they went 


OF PERU. 15^ 

in great numbers in 1534, imder the order of Sebaftlan de Benal- 
eazar, to undertake the deftruftion of Quito. The other towns and 
boroughs of the empire were over-run with the fame fpirit of ra- 
pine ; and the citizens and the temples were plundered in all parts. 

Thofe of the conquerors, who did not take up their refidence in 
the fettlements which they found already formed, built towns on the 
fea-coafts, where before there were none ; for the fterility of the 
foil had not permitted the Peruvians to multiply much there, and 
they had not been induced to remove thither from the extremity of 
their country, becaufe they failed very little. Paita, Truxillo, Callao, 
Pifca and Arica, were the roads which the Spaniards deemed moft 
convenient for the communication they intended to eftabiifli among 
themfelves and with the mother country. The different pofitions 
©f thefe new cities determined the degree of their profperity. 

Thofe which were afterwards built in the inland parts of the 
country were erefted in regions which prefented a fertile foil, co- 
pious harvefts, excellent paftures, a mild and falubrious climate, 
and all the conveniences of life. Thefe places, which had hitherto 
been fo well cultivated by a numerous and flourifliing people, were 
now totally difregarded. Very foon they exhibited only a deplorable 
picture of a horrid defert ; and this wildnefs muft have been more 
melancholy and hideous than the dreary afpe6l of the earth before 
the origin of focieties. The traveller, who was led by accident or 
curiofity into thefe defolate plains, could not forbear abhorring the 
barbarous and bloody authors of fuch devaflations, while he reflected 
that it was not owing even to the cruel illufions of glory, and to the 
fanaticifm of conqueft, but to the ftupid and abjeft defire of gold, 
that they had facrificed fo much more real treafure, and fo numerous 
a population. 

This infatiable thirft of gold, which neither tended to fubfiftence, 
fafety nor policy, was the only motive for eftablifliing new fettle- 
ments, fome of which have been kept up, while feveral have de- 
cayed, and others have been formed in their ftead. The fate of 
them all has correfponded with the difcovery, progrefs or declenfion 
of the mines to which they were fubordinate. 

Fewer errors have been committed in the means of procuring 
provifions. The natives had hitherto lived hardly on any thing 
but inaize, fruits and pulfe, for which they had ufed no othe 
feafoning except fait and pimento. Their liquors, which we 
iiiada from different roots, were more diverfified ; of thefe the chicha 

X z was 


was the mod ufual ; but the conquerors were not fatisfied elthet* 
•with the liquors or with the food of the people they had fubdued. 
They imported vines from the old world, which foon multiplied 
fufticiently in the fands of the coails at lea, Pifca, Nafca, Moquequa, 
and Truxillo, to furnifli the colony with the wine and brandy it 
wanted. Olives fucceeded ftill better, and yielded a great abundance 
of oil, which was much fuperior to that of the mother country. 
Other fruits were traniplanted with the fame fuccefs. Sugar fucceeds 
fo well, that none of any other growth can be compared to that 
which is cultivated in thofe parts, where it never rains. In the in- 
land country wheat and barley were fown ; and at length all the Eu- 
ropean quadrupeds were foon found grazing at the foot of the 

This was a confiderable flep, but there flill remained much more 
to be done. After they had provided for a better and a greater 
choice of fubfiftence, the next care of the Spaniards was to have a 
drefs more commodious and more agreeable than that of the Peru- 
vians. Thefe were, however, better clothed than any other Ameri- 
can nation. They owed this fuperiority to the advantage which 
they alone poflefled, of having the lama and pa-cos, domeftic ani- 
mals, which ferved them for this ufe. 

- After the conqueft, all the Indians were obliged to wear clothes. 
As the oppreflion under which they groaned did not allow them to 
exercife their former indultry, they contented themfelves with the 
coarfer cloths of Europe, for which they were made to pay an ex- 
orbitant price. When the gold and filver which had efcapcd the ra- 
pacity of the conquerors were exhaufted, they thought of re-efta- 
blifhing their national manufadures. Thefe were fome time after 
prohibited, on account of the deficiency which they occafioned in 
the exports of the mother country. The impoflibility which the 
Peruvians found of purchafing foreign fluffs, and paying their 
taxes, occafioned permiffion to be given at the end of ten years for 
their re-eflablifliment. They have not been difcontinued fince that 
time, and have been brought to as great a degree of perfeftion as it 
was poffible they could be under a continual tyranny. 

With the wool of the vicuna, a fpecies of wild pacos, they make, 
at Cufco and its territory, llockings, handkerchiefs and fcarfs. Thefe 
nianufaftures would have been multiplied, if the fpirit of deftrudion 
had not fallen on animals as well as on men. The fame wool, mixed 
witU that of the flieep imported thither froija Europe, which have 


OF PERU. I5'7 

exceedingly cTegenerated, ferves for carpets, and makes alfo tolerably- 
fine cloth. Fleeces of inferior quality are employed in fcrges, drug- 
get?, and in all kinds of coarfe ftuffs. 

The manufafturcs fubfervicnt to luxury are eftabliflied at Are- 
quipa, Cufco and Lima. In thefe three towns is made a prodigious 
number of gold toys and plate, for the ufc of private perfons, and 
alfo for the churches. All thefe manufadures are but coarfely 
wrought, and mixed with a great deal of copper. We feldom dif- 
cover more tafte in their gold and filver laces and embroideries, 
which their manufavTtures alfo produce. This is not altogether the 
cafe in regard to their lace, which, when mixed with that of Europe, 
looks very beautiful. This laft manufadure is conrunoniy in the 
hands of the nuns, who employ in it the Peruvian girls, and the 
young mellees of the towns, who for the moll part, before marriage, 
pafs iome years in the convent. 

Other hands are employed in painting and gilding leather for 
rooms, in making with wood and ivory pieces of inlaid work ami 
fculpture, and in drawing figures on the marble that is found at Cu- 
cuca, or on linen imported from Europe. Thefe different works, 
which are almoft all manufactured at Cufco, ferve for ornaments 
for houfes, palaces and temples ; the drawing of them is not bad, 
but the colours are neither exad nor permanent. If the Indians, 
who invent nothing, but are excellent imitators, had able mafters 
aad excellent models, they v.'ould at leaft make good copyills. At 
the clofe of the laft century, feme works of a Peruvian painter, 
named Michael de St. Jacques, were brought to Rome, and the con- 
-noiffeurs difcovered marks of genius in them. 

■ Though the Peruvians were unacquainted with coin, they kne^T 
theufe of gold and filvcr, for they employed them in diiferent kinds 
of ornaments. Independent of what the torrents and accident pro- 
cured them of thefe metals, fome mines had been opened of little 
depth. The Spaniards have not tranfmitted to us the manner in 
which thefe rich productions were drawn from the bofom of the 
earth. Their pride, which has deprived us of fo much ufeful know- 
ledge, undoubtedly made them think, that, in the inventions of a. 
people whom they called barbarour, there was nothing that was 
worthy to be recorded. 

The difference as to the manner in which the Peruvians worked 
their mines, did n ,t extend to th^ mines themfelves. The con- 
querors opened th^m on all fides. At firfl the goUl mines tempted 
4 " ' the 


the avarice of the greater number. Fatal experience difcouraged 
thofe whom paffion had not blinded : they clearly faw, that, for 
feme enormous fortunes raifed in this manner, great numbers, who 
had only moderate fortunes, were totally ruined. Thefe mines funk 
into fuch difcredit, that, in order to prevent them from being aban- 
doned, the government was obliged to take the twentieth part of 
their produce, inftcad of the fifth, which it at firft received. 

The mines of filver were more common, more equal, and richer. 
They even produced filver of a Angular fpecies, rarely found elfe- 
where. Towards the fea-coaft great lumps of this metal are found 
in the fands. 

There are a great number of other mines which are infinitely 
more important, and are found in the rocks and on the mountains. 
Several of them gave falfe hopes ; fuch, in particular, was that of 
Ucuntaya, difcovered in 17 13: this was only an incruftation of al- 
moft mafly filver, which at firft yielded feveral millions, but was foon 

Others which were deeper have been alike deferted: their produce, 
though equal to what it was originally, was not fufficient to fupport 
the expenfe of working them, which augmented every day. Th« 
mines of Quito, Cufco and Arequipa, have experienced that revo- 
lution which awaits many of the reft. 

There are greater numbers of very rich mines which the waters 
have invaded. The dii'pofition of the ground, which from the fum- 
mit of the Cordilleras goes continually flielving to the South fea, 
niuft neceflarily render thefe events more common at Peru than in 
other places. This inconvenience, which with greater care and fkill 
might often have been prevented or diminiflied, has been in fome 
iuftances remedied. 

Jofeph Salcedo, about the year 1660, had difcovered, not far fron* 
the town of Puna, the mine of Laycacota : it was fo rich, that they 
often cut the filver with a chizel. Profperity had fo elevated the 
mind of the proprietor, that he permitted all the Spaniards, who 
came to feek their fortune in this part of the new world, to work 
fome days on their own account, without weighing or taking any 
account of the prefents he made them. This generolity drew around 
him an infinite number of people, whofe avidity made them quarrel 
with each other, and the love of money made thein take up arms 
and fall upon one anotlui ; and their benefndtor, who had neglefted 
Ro expedient to prevent and extinguifli their languinary contentions. 

OF PERU. 1^9 

was hanged as being the author of them. Whilft he was in prifon, 
the water got pofleiTion of his mine. Siiperftition foon made it 
imagined, that this was a punifhment for the horrid n£t they had 
perpetrated againft him. This idea of Divine vengeance was revered 
for a long time; but at laft, in 1740, Diego de Bachna aflbciated 
with other opulent people to avert the fprings which had deluged 16 
much treafure. The labours which this difficult undertaking re- 
quired were not finiflied till 1754. The mine yields as much now 
as it did at firft. But mines ftill richer than this have been difco- 
vered : fuch, for example, is that of Potofi, which was found in the 
fame country where the Incas worked that of Porco. 

An Indian, named Hualpa, in 1515, purfuing fome deer, in order 
to climb certain fteep rocks laid hold of a bufh, the roots of which 
loofened from the earth, and brought to view an ingot of filver. 
The Indian had recourfe to it for his own ufe, and never failed to 
return to his treafure every time that his wants or his defires folicited 
him to it. The change that happened in his fortune was remarked 
by one of his countrymen, and he difcovcred to him the fecret. 
The two friends could not keep their counfel and enjoy their good 
fortune: they quarrelled; on which the indifcreet confident difco- 
rered the whole to his mafter, Villaroell, a Spaniard who was fettled 
in the neighbourhood. Upon this the mine became known, and 
,was worked, and a great number of them were found in its vicinity; 
the principal of which are in the northern part of the mountain, 
and their diredlion is from north to fouth. The moft intelligent 
people of Peru have obferved, that this is in general the diredion of 
the richeft mines. 

The fame of what was paiTing at Potofi foon fpread abroad, and 
there was quickly built at the foot of the mountain a town, confid- 
ing of fixty thoufand Indians and ten thoufand Spaniards. The 
fterility of the foil did not prevent its being immediately peopled. 
Corn, fruit, flocks, American fluffs, European luxuries, arrived 
there from every quarter. Induftry, which every where follows the 
current of money, could not fearch for it with fo much fuccefs as 
at its fource. It evidently appeared, that in 1738 thefe mines pro- 
duced annually near nine hundred and fevcnty-eight thoufand 
pounds, without reckoning the filver which was not regiftered, and 
what had been carried off by fraud. From that time the produce 
has been fo much diminifhed, that no more than one eighth part of 
the coin v»'hich was formerly ftruclt is now made. 



At the mines of Potofi, and all the mines of South- Aniei lea, thf 
Spaniards, in purifying their gold and filver, ufe mercury, with 
which they are fupplied from Guan^a Velica. The common opi- 
nion is, that this mine was difcovered in 1564; the trade of mer- 
cury was then ftill free; it became an exclufive trade in 1571 : at 
this period all the mines of mercury were fliut, and that of Guan^a 
Velica alone was worked, the property of which the king referred 
to himfelf. It is not found to diminifli. This mine is dug in a pro- 
digioufly large mountain, fixty leagues from Lima. In its profound 
abyfs are feen ftreets, fquares, and a chapel, where the myfteries of 
religion on all feftivals are celebrated: millions of flambeaux are 
continually kept to enlighten it. 

Private people, at their own expenfe, work the mine of Guan9a 
Velica. They are obliged to deliver to government, at a ftipulated 
price, all the mercury they extract from it. As foon as they have 
procured the quantity which the demands of one year require, the 
work is fufpended. Part of the mercury is fold on the fpot, and 
the reft is fent to the royal magazines throughout all Peru, from 
wherice it is delivered out at the fame price it is fold in Mexico. 
This arrangement, which has occafioned many of the mines to drop, 
and prevented others from being opened, is inexcufable in the 
Spaniih fyftem : the court of Madrid, in this rcfpeft", merits the 
fame reproaches as a miniflry in 'other countries would incur, that 
would be blind enough to lay a duty on the implements of agri- 

The mine of Guanqa Velica generally afFeds thofc who work in it 
with convullions : this and the other mines, which are not lefs un- 
healthy, are all worked by the Peruvians. Thefe unfortunate vic- 
tims of an infatiable avarice are crowded all together and plunged 
naked into thefe abyfles, the greateft part of which are deep, and all 
fcxceflively cold. Tyranny has invt:nted this refinement in cruelty, 
to render it impoflible for any thing to efciipe its rcftlcfs vigilance. If 
there are any wietches who long lurvive fuch barbarity, it is the ufe 
of cocoa that preferves them. 

In the Cordilleras, near the city of Paz, is a moiintain of re- 
markable height, called lUimani, which doubtlefs contains immenfe 
riches ; for a crag of it being fome years ago fevered by a flafli of 
lightning, and falling on a neighbom-ing mountain, iuch a quantity 
of gold was found in the fragments, that for fome time that metal 
was fold at V.\z for eight pieces of eight per ounce j but its fummit 


OF PERU; i6l 

being perpetually covered with ice and fiiovv, no mine has been 
opened in the mountnin. 

The city of La Paz is of a middhng fize, and from its fitnation 
among the breaches of the Cordilleras, the ground on which it 
(lands is unequal, and it is alfo furrounded by mountains. When 
the river Titicaca is iricreafed, either by the rains, or the melting of 
the fnow on the mountains, its current forces along large mafles of 
rocks with fome grains of gold, which are found after the flood hai 
fubfided. Hence fome idea fnay be formed of the riches inclofed in 
fhe bowels of thefe mountains, a remarkable proof of which ap- 
peared in the year 1730, when an Indian, wafhing his feet in the ri- 
Ver, difcovered fo large a lump of gold, that the Marquis de Caftle 
Fuerte gave twelve thoufand pieces of eight for it^ and fent it as a 
prefcnt to the King of Spain. 

Vej..IV. V HISTORi^ 

( »6^ ) 



V_>iHILI is fituatcd between 25° and 45° fouth latitude, and 65* and 
85° weft longitude ; its length is one thoufand two hundred and fixty 
milesj and its greateft breadth five hundred and eighty : it is bounded 
on the north, by Peru ; on the eart, by Paragua or La Plata ; on the 
fouth, by Patagonia ; and on the weft, by the Pacific ocean. It lies 
on both fides of the Andes ; Chili Proper lies on the weft, and Cuyo 
or Cutio, on the eaft. The principal towns in the former are St. 
Jago and Baldivia j in the latter, St. John de Frontiera. 

The firft attempt of the Spaniards upon this countiy was made by 
Almngro in the year 15355 after he and Pizaro had completed the 
conqueft of Peru. He fet out on his expedition to Chili with a confi- 
derable body of Spaniards and auxiliary Indians. For two hundred 
leagues he was well accommodated with every necefTary by the In- 
dians, who had been fubjeds of the Emperors of Peru ; but reaching 
the barren country of Charcos, his troops became difcontented 
through the hardfliips they fufFered, which determined Almagro to 
climb the mountains called Cordilleras, in order to get the fooner 
into Chili ; being ignorant of the invaluable mines ofPotofi, con- 
tained in the province of Charcos, where he then was. At that time 
the Cordilleras were covered with fnow, the depth of which obliged 
him to dig his way through it. The cold made fuch an impreffion 
on his naked Indians, that it is computed no lefs than ten thoufand 
of them perlftied on thefe dreadful mountains, one hundred and fifty 
of the Spaniards Iharing the fame fate, while many of the furvivors 
loft their fingers and toes through the excefs of cold. At laft, 
Ifter encountering incredible difhculries, Almagro reached a fine, 
temperate, and fertile plain on the oppofite fide of the Cordilleras, 
where he was received with the grcateft kindnefs by the natives. 
Thefe poor favages, taking the Spaniards for deputies of their god 


OF CHILI. 163 

Virachoca, immediately collefted for them an offering of gold and 
lilver, worth two hundred and ninety thoulaiicl ducats ; and foon 
after brought a prelent to Almagro worth three hundrtd thoufand 
more. Thefe offerings only determined him to conquer the whole 
country as foon as poflible. The Indians, among whom he now was, 
had acknowledged the authority of the Peruvian hicas, or Emperors, 
and confequently gave Almagro no trouble. He therefore marched 
immediately againft thofe who had never been conquered by the Peru- 
vians, and inhabited the fouthern parti of Chili. Thefe Ixivages 
fought with great refolution, and difputed every inch of ground ; 
but m five months time the Spaniards had made fuch progrefs, that 
they muft infallibly have reduced the whole province in a very littls 
time, had not Almagro returned to Peru, in confecjuence of a com* 
miffion fent him from Spain. 

In 1540, Pizaro having overcome and put Almagro to death, fent 
into Chili, BaldiviaorValdivia, who had learned the rudiments of war 
in Italy, and was reckoned one of the beft officei s in the Spanifli fei vice. 
As he penetrated fouthward, however, he met with much qppoiiuon ; 
the confederated caziques frequently gave him battle, and difplayed 
great courage and fefolution, but could not prevent him from pene- 
trating to the valley of Mafiocho, which he fo^nd incredibly fertile and 
populous. Here he founded the city of St. Jago, and finding gold 
piines in the neighbourhood, forced the Indians to work m them, at 
the fame time building a caftle for the {afety and proteftion or" his new 
colony, 'ihe natives, exafperated at this flavery, inimediately tool^ 
up arms, attacked the fort, and though defeated and rcpulfed, fet fire 
to the out works, which contained all the provifions of the Spaniards. 
Nor were they difcouraged by this and many other defeats, but Hill 
continued to carry on the war with vigour. At laft, Ya'divia having 
overcome them in many battles, forced the inhabitants of the vale to 
fubmit ; upon which he immediately fet them to work in the mines of 
Qiiilotta. This indignity offered to their countrymen redoubled the 
fury of thofe who remained at liberty. Their ui molt effo't-S howr 
ever, were as yet unable to ftop Valdivia's progrefs. Having crofTed 
the large rivers MauUe and Hata, he traverfcd a vaft trail of country 
and founded the city of La Conception o.i the South fea coaft ; he 
erected fortrefles m fcveral parts of the country, in «rdcr to, keep the 
natives in awe, and built the city called Imperial, about fai ty leaguea 
to the fouthward of Conception. The Spanifli writers fay, that the 
iieighbourhig valley contained eighty thoufand inhabitants of a 

y 2r peaceable 


peaceable difpofition, and who were even fo tame as to fuffer Valf 
<livia to parcel out their lands among his followers, while they themr 
felves remained in a ftaie of inadivity. About fixteen leagues to tho 
eaflward of Imperial, the Spanifli general laid the foundations of the 
city of Villa Rica, fo called on account of the rich gold mines he 
found there. But his ambition and avarice had now involved him ia 
difficulties from which he could never be extricated : he had extended 
his conquefts beyond what his flrength was capable of maintaining. 
The Chilelians were ftiil as defirous as ever of recovering their liber- 
ties. The horfes, fire arms, and armour of the Spaniards, indeed, 
appeared dreadful to them ; but thoughts of endlefs flavery were ftill 
more fo. In the courfe of the war they had difcovered that the Spar 
niards were vulnerable and mortal men like themfelves ; they 
hoped, therefore, by dint of fuperiority in numbers, to be able tQ 
expel the tyrannical ufurpers. Had all the nations joined in this refo- 
lution, the Spaniards had certainly been exterminated ; but fome of 
them were of a pacific difpofition, while others confidered fervitude 
as the greateft of all poffible calamities. Of this laft opinion were 
the Aracceans, the moil intrepid people of Chili, and who had given 
Valdivia the greateft trouble. They all role to a man, and chofe 
Capaulican, a renowned hero among them, for their leader. Val- 
divia, however, received notice of their revolt fooner than they in- 
tended he ftiould, and returned with all expedition to the vale of 
Araccea ; but before he arrived, fourteen thoufand of the Chile- 
fians were there afi"embled under the conduft of Capaulican ; he at- 
tacked them with his cavalry, and forced them t9 retreat into the 
woods, but could not obtain a complete victory, ^s they kept conti- 
jiually (allying out and haraffinghis men. At laft Capaulican having 
obferved, that fighting with fuch a number of undifciplined troops, 
only ferved to cpntribute to the defeat and confufion of the whole, di-^ 
vided his forces into bodies of one thoufand each. Thefe he directed 
to attack the enemy by turns, and though he did not expeft that a 
fingle thoufand vyould put them to flight, he direfted them to make as 
long a ftand as they could, when they were to be relieved and fup- 
ported by another body, and thus the Spaniards woultl be at laft 
wearied out and overcome. The event fully anfyvcred his expefta- 
tions. The Chilefians rpaintained a fight for feven or eight hours, 
till the Spaniards, growing faint for want of refrefliment, retiree^ 
precipitately. Valdivia ordered them to jppllcfs a pafs at fome dif- 


OF CHILI. 165 

taace from the field, to flop the purfuit ; but tbis defign being 
was a difcovered to the Chilefians of his page, who native of 
that country, the Spaniards were fiuroundod on all fides, and 
cut in pieces by the Indians. The general was taken and put to 
death; fome fay with the tortures ufualJy inflifted by thofe favages 
on their prifoners ; others, that he had i-relted gold poured d-uvn his 
throat; but all agree, that the Indians made flutes and other inftru- 
jnents of his bones, and prelerved his Ikuil as a rrionunient of their 
yiiftory, which they celebrated by an annual feltivai. After this vic- 

-tory, the Chilefians had another engagement with their enemies, in 
which alfo they proved victorious, defeating the Spaniards vith the 
lofs of near three thoufand men ; and upon this they bent their whole 
force againft the colonies. The city of Conception being abandoned 
by the Spaniards, was taken and deftroyed ; but the Indians were 
forced to raife the fiege of Imperial, and their progrefs was at laft" 
jiopped by Garcia de Mendozi, who defeated Capaulican, took him 
prifoner, and put him to death. No defeats, however, coutd dif- 
pirit the Chilefians ; they continued the war for fifty years, and to 
this day they remain unconquered, aiid give the Spaniards more 
trouble than any other American nation. Their moft irreconcileabie 
enemies are the inhabitants of Araccea and Tucapel, thofe to the 
fouth of the river Bobio, or whofe country extends toward? the Cor- 
dilleras. The manners of thefe people greatly refemble thofe of 
North-Anierica, but feem to have a more warlike difpofition. It is a 
conftant rule with the Chilefians never to fue for peace. The Spa- 
niards are obliged not only to make the firft overtures, but tr. pur- 
chafe it by prefents. They have at laft been obliged to abandon all 

■ thoughts of extending their conquefts, and reduced to cover their 
frontiers by erefting forts at proper diftances. 

The Spaniili colonies in Chili are difperfed on the borders of the 
South fea- They are parted from Peru by a de'ert eighty leagues in 
breadth, and bounded by the ifland of Chiloe, at the extremity next 
the ftraits of Magellan. There are no fettlements on the co..ft except 
thofe of Baldivia, Conception ifland, Valparaifo, and Coquimbo, or 
La Serena, which are all fea ports. In the inland count/y is St. 
Jago, the capital of the colony. There is no culture nor habitation 
at any diftance from thefe towns. The buildings in the whole pro- 
vince are low, made of unburnt brick, and nioftly thatched. This 

: pradice is pbferved on account of the frequent earthquakes, and is 

i66 general'description 

properly adapted to the nature of the climate, as to well as the indo« 
lence of the inhabitants. 

The climate of Chili is one of the moft wholeforae in the whole 
world. The vicinity of the Cordilleras gives it fuch a delighttul 
temperature as could not otherwife be expe£led in that latitude. 
Though gold mines are found in it, their richnefs has been too much 
extolled ; their produce never exceeds two hundred and eighteen 
thouland feven hundred and fifty pounds per ann. The foil is prodi- 
gioufly fertile. All the European fruits have improved in that happy 
climate. The wine would be excellent if nature were properly 
aflifted by art ; and the corn harveft is reckoned a bad one when it 
does not yield a hundred fold. With all thefe advantages, Chili has 
no dire6t intercourfe with Spain ; their trade is confined to Peru, 
Paraguay, and the favages on their frontiers. "With thefe laft they 
exchange their lefs valuable commodities tor oxen, horfes, and their 
own children, whom they are ready to part with for tl^e moft trifling 
things. This province fupplies Peru with great plenty of hides, 
dried fruit, copper, fait meat, horfes, hemp, lard, wheat, and gold ; 
in exchange, it receives tobacco, fugar, cocoa, eartlien ware, woollea 
cloth, linen, hats, made at Quito, and every article of luxury 
brought from Europe, The fliips fent from Callao on this traffic 
were formerly bound to Conception bay, but now come to Valpa- i 
rajfo. The commerce between this province and Paraguay is carried 
on by land, though it is a journey of three hundred leagues, forty of 
which lie through the fnows and precipices of the Cordilleras ; but if 
it was carried on by fea, they rauft either pafs the ftraits of Magellan, 
or double cape Horn, which the Spaniards always avoid as much as 
pnfTible. To Paraguay are fent feme woollen fluffs called ponchos, 
which are ufed for cloaks : alfo wines, brandy, oil, and chiefly gold ; 
in return they receive wax, a kind of tallow fit to make foap, Euro- 
pean goods, and negroes. 

Chili is governed by a chief, who is abfolute in all civil, political, 
and military affairs, and is alfo independent of the viceroy. The 
hiLtcr has no authority except when a governor dies, in which 
cafe he may appoint one in his room for a time, till Spain names 
a fuccefTor. If on fome occafion the viceroy has interfered in 
the government of Chili, it was when he fias been either authorifed. 
by a particular truft repolcd in him by the court, or by the deference 
paid to the eminence of his ofticc ; or when he has been aftuated by 


OF CHILI. 167 

his own ambition to extend his authority.* In the whole province of 
Chili there are not twenty ihoufand white men, and not more than 
lixty thoufand negroes, or Indians, able to bear arms. The military 
eftablifiiment amounted formerly to two thoufand men; but the main- 
taining of them being found too expenfive, they were reduced to five 
hundred at the beginning of this century. 

* With refpeft to the power o the governor of Chili, it is doubtful whether the above 
is correift, as fome writers afTert that he h fubordinate to the viceroy of Peru, in all mat- 
fers relating to the gnvernnicnt, to the finances, and 10 war, but independent of him as 
chief adminiftrator of jufticc, and prcfident of the royal Audience. Eleven inferior officers, 
djrtributcd in ihc province, arc charged, uaJcr his orders, with ihe details of adminif- 


{ i68 ) 




ARAGUAY is fituated betvVeen 12° and 37-^^11111 latitude, and 
50" and 75° weft longitude; its length is one thouiand five hundred 
miles, and its breadth one thoufand. It is bounded on the north, by 
Amazonia; on the eaft, by Brafii; on the fouth, by Patagonia; and 
on the weft, by Chili and Peru. 

It is divided into fix provinces, viz. Paraguay, Parana, 
GuAiRA, Uragua, Tucuman, and Rio de la Plata. 

This country, befides an infinite number of fmall rivers, is wa- 
tered by three principal ones, the Paragua, Uragua, and Parana, 
which, united near the fea, form the famous Rio de la Plata, or Plate 
river, and which annually overflow their banks; and on their recefs, 
leave them enriched with a flime, that produces the greateft plenty 
of whatever is committed to it.* 

This vaft traft is far from being wholly fubdued or planted by the 
Spaniards. There are many parts in a great degree unknown to them, of 

* The grand river La Plata defervcs a particular defcription. A Modenefc Jefuir, 
ty the name of P. Cattanco, who failed up this river, fpcaiis irt tiic following language 
concerning it: " While I refided in Europe, and read in books of hiflory or geography 
that the river de la Plata was one hundred and fifty miles in breadth, I confidcrcd it as an 
exaggeration, bccaufe in this hemifphere we have no example of fuch vaft rivers. When I 
approached its mouth, I liad the moA vehement defirc to afccrtain the breadth with ray 
©wn eyes, and I have found the matter to be exadtly as it was rcpiefentcd. This I de- 
duce particularly from one circumftance : when we took our departure from Moste 
Viedo, a fort fituated more than one hundred miles from the mouth of the i iver, and where 
its breadth is confidcrably diminilhed, we failed a complete day before we difcovcred the 
land on the oppofite fide of the river ; and when we were in the midd'c of the chan- 
nel, we could not difcovcr land on either fide, and faw nothing but the flcy .ind water, 
a« if we had been in fomc great ocean. Indeed, we Ihould have taken it to be fea, if 
the frelh water of the river, which was turbid like the Po, had not fatlsficd us that it was 
a rivst." 


\o any other people in Europe. The principal province of which ws 
have any knowledge, is that which is called Rio de la Plata, towards 
the mouth of the above-mentioned rivers. This province, with all the 
adjacent parts, is one continued plain for feveral hundred miles, ex- 
tremely fertile, and produces cotton in great quantities ; tobacco, 
and the valuable herb called paraguay, with a variety of fruits, and 
the prodigious rich paftures, in which are bred fuch herds of cattle, 
that it is faid the hides of the beads al'e all that is properly bouglit, the 
carcafe being in a manner given into the bargain. A horfe fome 
time ago might be bought for a dollar, and the ufual price of a bul- 
lock, chofen out of a herd of two or three hundred, was only four 
rials. But contrary to the general nature of America, this country 
is deftitute of v/oods. The air is remarkable f\Veet and ferene, and 
the waters of La Plata are equally pure and wholefonie. 

The Spaniards firil difcovered this country by failing up the river 
La Plata in 1515, and founded the town of Buenos Ayres, fo called 
On account ef the excellence of the air, on the fouth fide of the river, 
fifty leagues within its mouth, where it is feven leagues broad. This 
h one of the mod: confiderable towns in South-America, the capital 
of this country, and the only place of traflic to the fouth of Brazil. 
Here we meet with the merchants of Europe and Peru, but no regu- 
lar fleet comes hither as to the other parts of South-America ; tv/o, 
or at mod three regifter fliips make the whole of their regular inter- 
courfe with Jiurope ; their returns are very valuable, coniifting 
chiefly of the gold and filver of Chili and Peru, fugar and hides. 
Thofe who have carried on a contraband trade to this city, have 
found it more advantageous than atiy other. The benefit of this con- 
traband is now wholly in the hands of the Portuguefe, who keep 
magazines for that purpofe in fuch parts of Brafil as lie near thii 

Buenos Ayres is regularly built, its ftreets are wide, thehotifes are 
extremely low, and each of them is accommodated with a garden. 
The public and private buildings which, fixty years ago, were all 
made o? earth, are of more folid and commodious conftruction, 
fince the natives have learned the art of making brick and lime. 
The number of inhabitants is about thirty thoufand. One fide of 
the town is defended by a fortrcis with a garriion of fix or feven 
hundred men j the fliips get to it by failing up a river that wants 
depth, is full of iflands, (lioal?, and rocks, and where itorms are 
more frequent and more dreadful than on the ocean. It is necefTary to 

Vol. IV. Z anchor 


anchor every night on the Ipot where they come to, and on the mo^ 
iiioderate days a pilot muft go to found the way for the flxip ; after 
having furmounted thefe difliculties, the fhips are obliged, at the 
diftance of three leagues from the town, to put their goods on board 
ibme light veflcl, and to go to refit, and to wait for their cargoes at 
Jntunado deBarragan, lituated fevenor eight leagues below. 

Faragua fends annually into the kingdom of Peru as many as one 
tlioufand five hundred, or two thoufand mules. They travel over 
dreary ^deferts for the diftance of eight or nine hundred leagues. 
What is not man capable of doing, when neceffity, refolution, and 
avarice are united ? neither deep and miry fwamps, nor fummits of 
lofty mountains covered with eternal fnow; can bar his progrefs. The 
province of Tucuman furniflies annually, fixteen or eighteen thou- 
fand oxen, and four or five thoufand horfes, brought forth and reared 
upon its own territory. Paragua fends feveral articles of commerce 
to Spain, l«ut they are all brought from neighbouring diilriL^s. 
The only article it fusrniflies from its own territory is hides, all thefe 
are lent to Europe from Buenos Ayres. 

We cannot quit this country without mentioning that extraordinary 
fpecies of commonwealth which the Jefuits ereded in the interior 
parts, and concerning which thefe crafty priefts have endeavoured to 
keep flrangers in the dark. 

About the middle of the laft century, thofe fathers reprefented to the 
court of Spain, that the want of fuccefs in their miffions was ov/ineto 
the fcandal which the immorality of the Spaniards never failed to give, 
and to the hatred which their infolent behaviour caufed in the In- 
dians. They infinuated, that were it not for thofe obitacles, the 
empire of the gofpel might, by their labours, have been extended 
into the moft unknown parts of America ; and that all thofe coun- 
tries might be fubdued to his Catholic majeily's obedience, without 
cxpenfe, and without force. This remonftrance met with fuccefs, 
the fphere of their labours was marked out, and the governors of 
the adjacent provinces had orders not to interfere, nor to fuffer any 
Spaniards to enter into this pale, without licences from the fathers ; 
they, on their part, agreed to pay a certain capitation tax, in pro- 
portion to their flock, and to fend a certain number to the king's 
%vorks whenever they fliall be demanded, and the miffions fliould be- 
come j)opuIous enough to fnpply them. 

On thefe terms thofe Jefuits gladly entered upon the fcene of ac- 
tion, and opened their fpiritual campai^i. They began by"' gathering 



together about fifty wandering families, whom they perfiiaded to 
fettle, and they united them into a little townfliip. This was the 
flight foundation upon which they built a fuperftruftuie which 
amazed the world, and added much to their power, at the fame time 
that it occafioned much envy againft their fociety. For when they 
had made this beginning, they laboured with fuch indefatigable pains, 
and fuch mafterly pohcy, that by degrees they mollified the minds of 
the moft favage nations, fixed the moft rambling, and fubdued thofe 
to their government who had long difclained to fubmit to the arms of 
the Spaniards and Portiigucfe. They prevailed upon thoufands of 
various difperfed tribes to embrace their religion, and thefe foon in- 
duced others to follow their example, magnifying the peace and tran- 
quillity they enjoyed under the direftion of the Fathers. 

Our limits do not permit us to trace with precifion all the ileps 
which were taken in the accompliihment of fo extraordinary a conqueft 
over the bodies and minds of men. The Jefuits left nothing undone 
that could confirm their fubjeftion, or that could increafe their num- 
ber ; and it is faid that above three hundred and forty thoufand fa- 
milies lived in obedience, and exprelfed an awe, bordering upon ado- 
ration, yet procured without any violence or conftraint ; that tlie In- 
dians were intruded in the military art, and could raife fixty thou- 
fand rnen well armed ; that they lived in towns, were regularly 
clad, laboured in agriculture, exercifed manufaftures, fome even 
afpired to the elegant arts, and that nothing could equal their fub- 
miffion to. authority, except their contentment under it. Some wri- 
ters have treated the character of thefe Jefuits with great feverity, 
accufing them of ambition, pride, and of carrying their authority to 
fuch an fuccefs, as to caufe not only perfons of both fexes, but even 
the magiftrates, who were always chofen from among the Indians, to 
be corrcfted before them with ftripes, and by fuflering perfons 
of the higheft diftinftion, within their jurifdiftions, to kifsthehem 
of their garments as the greateft honour. The priefls themfelves 
pofTefTed large property, all manufaftures were theirs, the natural 
produce of the country was brought to them, and the treafures an- 
nually remitted to the fuperior of the order, ieemed to evince that 
zeal for religion was not the only motive for forming thefe milfions. 
The Fathers would not permit any of the inhabitants of Peru, whe- 
ther Spaniards, Mellizos, or even Indians, to come v;ithin their mil- 
fions in Paraguay. In the year 1757, when part of this territory was 
peded by Spain to the crown of Portugal in exchange for Saint Sacra-. 

Z » nicntj 


ment, to make the Uragua the boundary of their pofleffions, tha 
Jefuits refufed to comply with this divifion, or to fuffer themfelves to 
be transferred from one hand to another, like cattle, without their 
own confent. We were informed by the Spanifh Gazette, that the 
Indians adually took up arms ; but notwithftanding the exaftnefs of 
their difcipline, they were eafily, and with confiderable flaughter, 
defeated by the European troops who were fent to quell them ; and 
in 1767, the Jefuits were removed from America, by royal authority, 
and their late fubjeds were put upon the fame footing with the refl 
of the inhabitants of the country. 

WITH refpeft to the iflands belonging to the Spaniili monarchy in 
this part of the globe, we ihall notice them in another place ; but in 
order to afford a more particular view of the Spanifh intereil in her 
South- American colonies, as well as of the policy purfued by her with 
refpeiSl; to them, we lliall offer a few additional general remarks on 
the government, ecclefiaftical eftabliflmient, and fyftem of trade car- 
ried on with them. 

Notwithftanding the rapid depopulation of America, a very con- 
iider^^ number of the native race ftill remains both in Mexico and 
Peru, efpeciaily in thofe parts which were not expofed to the firft 
fury of the Spanifh arms, or defolated by the firft efforts of their in- 
ckiflry, ftill more ruinous. In Guatimala, Chiapa, Nicaragua, and 
the other provinces of the Mexican empire, which itretch along the 
South fea, the race of Indians is ftill numerous ; their fettle- 
ments in fome places are fo populous, as to merit the name of cities. 
In the thi"ee audiences into v/hich New-Spain is divided, there are, 
as we have before mentioned, at lealt two millions of Indians ; a piti- 
ful remnant, indeed, of its ancient population, but fuch as ftill 
forms a body of people fuperior in number to that of all the other in- 
habitants of this extenfive country. In Peru feveral diflrids, par- 
ticularly in the kingdom of Quito, are occupied almoft entirely by 
Indians. In other provinces they are mingled with the Spaniards, 
and in many of their fettlements are almofl the only perfons whq 
pradife the mechanic arts, and 1111 mofl of the inferior ftations in fo- 



c'lety. As the inhabitants both of Mexico and Peru were accuftomed 
to a fixed refidence, and to a certain degree of regular induftry, Icfs 
violence was requifite in bringing them to forne conformity with 
the European modes of civil life. But wherever the Spaniards fettled 
among the favage tribes of America, their attempts to incorporate with 
them have been always fmitlefs, and often fatal to the natives. Im- 
patient of reftraint, and difdaining labour as a mark of ferviiity, they 
either abandoned their original feats, and fought for independence 
jn mountains and forefts inacceffible to their oppreflors, or periflied 
when reduced to a ftate repugnant to their ancient ideas and habits. 
In the diftrifts adjacent to Carihagena, to Panama, and to Buenos 
Ayres, the defolation is more general than even in thofe parts of 
Mexico and Peru, of which the Spaniards have taken moll full pof- 

But the eftablifliments of the Spaniards in the new world, though 
fatal to its ancient inhabitants, were made at a period when that mo- 
narchy was capable of forming them to the beft advantage. By the union 
of all its petty kingdoms, Spain was become a powerful ilate, equal to fo 
great an undertaking. Its monarchs having extended their preroga- 
tives far beyond the limits which once circumfcribed the regal power 
in every kin_i;dom of Europe, were hardly fubjcct to controul, either 
in concerting or in executing their meafures. 

Such was the power of the SpaniQi monarchs, when they were 
called to deliberate concerning the mode of eftablifliing their domi- 
nion over the moil remote provinces which had ever been fubjeded 
to any European ftate. In this deliberation they felt themfelvcs 
under no coajlltutional reftraint, and that as independent mafters 
of their own refolves, they might ifTue the ediiif s requifite for mo- 
delling the government of the new colonies, by a mere act of prero- 

This early interpofition of the Spanifli crown in order to regulate 
the policy and trade of its colonies, is a peculiarity which diftin- 
guiflies their progrefs from that of the colonies of any other Euro- 
pean nation. When the Portuguefe, the Englifli, and French, took 
poffeflion of the regions in America, the advantages which thefe pro- 
miled to yield were fb remote and uncertain, that their colonies were 
iiiffered to ftruggle through a hard, almoft without guidance 
or protection from the parent ftate. But gold and filver, the firft pro- 
duc'tions of the Spanifh fettlements in the new world, were more al- 
luring, and immediately attracted the attention of their monarchs. 
5 Though 


Though they had contributed little to the difcovery, and almofl no* 
thing to the conquefl of the new world, they inftantly affumed the 
funflion of its legiflators, and having acquired a fpecies of dominion 
formerly unknown, they formed a plan for exercifing it, to which 
nothing fimilar occurs in the hiftory of human atFairs. 

The fundamental maxim of Spanifli jurifprudence with refpeft to 
America, is to confider what has been acquii-ed there as vefted in the 
crown, rather than in the Hate. By the bull of Alexander VI. on 
which, as its great charter, Spain founded its right, all the regions 
that had been, or fliould be difcovered, v.-ere bellowed as a free gift 
■upon Ferdinand andlfabella. They and their fucceffors were uniformly 
held to be the univerfal proprietors of the vaft territories which the 
arms of their fubjefts conquered in the new world. From them al! 
grants of land there flowed, and to them they finally returned. The 
leaders who conducted the various expeditions, the governors who 
prefided over the different colonies, the officers of juftice, and the 
minifters of religion, were all appointed by their authority, and re- 
moveable at their pleafure. The people who compofed infant fet- 
tleraents were entitled to no privileges independent of the fovereign, 
or that ferved as a barrier againfl: the power of the crown. It is true, 
that when towns were built, and formed into bodies corporate, the 
citizens were permitted to eleft their own raagiftrates, who governed 
them by Jaws which the community enafted. Even in the moft def- 
potic ftates, this feeble fpark of liberty is not extinguiflied ; bnt in 
the cities of Spanifli America, this jurifdlftion is merely municipal, 
and is confined to the regulation of their own interior commerce and 
police. In Vv'hatever relates to public government, and the general 
intereft, the will of the fovereign is law; no political power originates 
from the people ; all centers in the crown, and in the officers of its 

When the conquefts of the Spaniards in America were completed, 
their monarchs, in forming the plan of internal policy for their new 
dominions, divided them into two immcnfe governments, one fub- 
je(5l to the viceroy of New-Spain, the other to the viceroy of Peru ; 
the jnrlfdiftion of the former extended over all the provinces belong- 
ing to S])iiin in the northern divifion of the American continent ; 
under thai of tlic latter, was comprehended v.'hatever flie pofTelTed in 
South-Amerirn. This arrangement, which, from the beginning, 
was attended with many inconveniencies, became intolerable when 
the remote provinces of each vice-royalty began to improve in indiiflry 



«nd population. As a remedy for thofe evils, a third vice-royalty h:\3 
been eftabliflicd in the prefent century at Santa Fe de Bogota, the 
capital of the new kingdom of Granada, the jurifdiftion of which 
extends over the whole kingdom of Tierra Firme and the province 
of Quito. Thofe viceroys not only reprefent the perfon of their 
fovereign, but poflefs his regal prerogatives within the precintfbs of 
their own governments, in their utmoft extent. Like him, they ex- 
ercife fupreme authority in every department of government, civil, 
niilitary and criminal. They have the fo!e right of nominating the 
perfons who hold many offices of the higheft importance, and the 
occafional privilege of fupplying thofe which, when they become 
vacant by death, are in the royal gii'r, until the fuccefTor appointed 
by the king fliall arrive. The external pomp of their government is 
fuited to its real dignity and poiver. Their courts are formed upoa 
the model of that at Madrid, vt-ith horfe and foot guards, a houfliold 
regularly eftabliflied, numerous attendants, and enfigns of command,' 
difplaying fuch magnificence as hardly retains the appearance of de- 
legated authority. 

But as the viceroys cannot difcharge in perfon the functions of a 
fupreme magiftrate in every part of their extenlive jurifdidion, they 
are aided in their government by officers and tribunals fimilar to 
thofe in Spain. The conduct of civil affiiirs in the various provinces 
and diftrifts, into which the Spanifli dominions in America are di- 
vided, is committed to magillrates of various orders and denomina- 
tions ; fome appointed by the king, others by the viceroy, but ait 
fubjecl to the command of the latter, and amenable to his jurlf- 
diiSion. The adminiftration of juftice is veiled in tribunals, known 
by the name of Audiences, and formed upon the model of the court 
of chancery in Spain. Thefe are eleven in number, and difpenfe 
iuftice to as many diftridts, into which the Spanifli dominions in 
America are divided. The number of judges in the court of Au- 
dience is various, according to the extent and importance of their ju- 
rifdiclion. The ftation is no lefs honourable than lucrative. Both 
civil and criminal caufes come under their cognizance, and for each, 
peculiar judges are fet apart. The Spanifli viceroys have often at- 
tempted to intrude themfelves into the feat of juftice, and with aa 
ambition which their diftance from the controul of a fuperior ren- 
dered bold, have afpired at a power which even their mafter does not 
venture to afTume. In order to check an ufurpaticn which mufl have 
annihilated juftice and fecurity in the Spanifli colonies, by fubjcfting 



the lives and property of all to the will of a fmgle man, the viceroys 
have been prohibited, in the moil explicit terms, by repeated laws, 
from interfering in the judicial proceedings of the courts of Audience,' 
or from delivering an opinion, or giving a voice with refpeft to any 
point litigated before them. In fome particular cafes, in which any 
tjueftion of civil right is involved, even the political regulations of 
the viceroy may be brought imder the review of the court of Audi- 
ence, which, in thofe inftances, may be deemed an intermediate 
power placed between him and the people, as a conflitutional barrier 
to circumlcribe his jurifdiflion. But as legal reflraints on a perfon 
who reprefents the fo-?ereign, and is clothed with his authority, are 
little fiiited to the genius of Spanifh policy, the hefitation and re- 
lerve with which it confers this power on the courts of Audience are 
remarkable. They may advife, they may remonftrate ; but, in the 
event of a direft collition between their opinion and the will of the 
viceroy, what he determines mull be carried into execution, and 
nothing remains for them but to lay the matter before the king and 
the council of the Indies. Upon the death of a viceroy, without 
any provifion of a fuccefFor by the king, the fupreme power is vefted 
in the court of Audience refident in the capital of the vice-royalty,- 
and tlie fenior judge, afftfted by his brethren, exercifes all the 
funftions of the viceroy while the office continues vacant. In mat- 
ters which corns under the cognizance of the Aiidiences, in the 
courfc of their ordinary jurifdiftion, as courts of juftice, their fen- 
tences are final in every litigation concerning property of lefs value 
than fix thoufand pefos ; but when the fubjeft in difpute exceeds 
that fumj their decifions are fubjeft to review, and may be carried 
by appeal before the royal council ot the Indies. 

In this council, one of the moit confiderable in the monarchy for 
dignity and power, is veiled the fupreme government of all the 
Spauilh dominions in America. It was firil eilabliQied by Ferdinand, 
in the year 1 5 1 1, and brought nito a mors perfeft form by Charles V. 
in the year 1524. Its jurifdidion extends to every department, ec- 
ck'fiallical, civil, military and commercial. All laws and ordinances 
relative to the government and police of the colonies originate there, 
and muil be approved of by two-thirds of the members, before 
they nre ilfued in the name of the king. All the oilices, of which 
the nomination is referved to the crown, are conferred in this coun- 
cil. To It each perfon employed in America, from the viceroy down- 
•wards, is accountable : it reviews their condud, rewards their fer- 



vices, and mflicT;s the punifli merits due to their malverfations : before 
it, is laid all the intelligence, either public or fecret, received 
from America, and every fcheme of improving the adminiftration, 
the police, or the commerce of the colonies, is fubmitted to its con- 
fidcration. From the firft inftitution of the council of the Indies, it 
lias been the conftant objeft of the catholic monarchs to maintain its 
authorit)', and to make fuch additions from time to time, both to 
its power and its fplendor, as might render it formid:ibIe to all their 
fubjefts in the new world. Whatever degree of public order and 
virtue ftill remains in that country, where fo many circumftanccs 
confpire to relax the former, and to corrupt the latter, may be af- 
cribed in a great meafure to the wife regulations and vigilant infpeftion 
of this refpeftable tribunal. 

As the king is fuppofed to be always pi-efent in his council of the 
Indies, its meetings are held in the place where he refides. Another 
tribunal has been inftituted, in order to regulate fuch commercial 
affairs as required the immediate and perfonal infpedion of thofe 
appointed to fuperintend them : this is called Cafa de la Contrata- 
cion, or the houfe of trade, and was eftabhflied in Seville, the port 
to which commerce with the new world was confined, as early as 
the year 1501. It may be confidered both as a board of trade and 
as a court of judicature : in the former capacity, it takes cognizance 
of whatever relates to the intercourfe of Spain with America ; it re- 
gulates what commodities fliould be exported thither, and has the 
infpecftion of fuch as are received in return : it decides concerning 
the departure of the fleets for the Wefi:-Indies, the freight and bur- 
den of the fhips, their equipment and deftination : in the latter ca.- 
pacity it judges with refpeft to every queftion, civil, commercial, or 
criminal, arifing in confequcnce of the tranfactions of Spain with 
America ; and in both thefe departments, its decillons are exempted 
from the review of any court hut that of the council of the Indies. 

Such is the great outline of that fyftem of government which Spain 
has eftabliflied in her American colonies. To enumerate the various 
fubordinate boards and officers employed in the adminiftration of 
juftice, in coUeding the public revenue, and in regulating the interior 
police of the country; to defcribe their dirllrent functions, and to 
inquire into the mode and effeft of their operations, would prove a 
detail no lefs intricate than minute, and uninterefting. 

The firft: object of the Spanifh monarchs was to fecure the pro- 
duiSlions of the colonies to the parent ftatc, by an abfolute prohibi- 

VoL.IV. A a tion 


tion of any intercourfe with foreign nations. They took poffellum 
of America by right of conqueft, and, ronfcious not only of the 
feeblenefs of their infant fettlements, but aware of the difficuUy in 
ellabHfliing their dominion over regions fo extenfive, or in retabing 
fo many reludant nations under the yoke, they dreaded the intrufion 
of flrangcrs; they even fhunned their infpeftion, and endeavoured to 
keep them at a diftance from their coafts. This fpirit of jealoufy and 
exclufion, which at firft was natural, and perhaps neceffary, augmented 
as their poireffions in America extended, and the value of them came 
to be more fully underflood : in confequence of it, a fyftem of co- 
lonizing was introduced, to which there had hitherto been nothing 
jfimilar among mankind. In their American fettlements, the Spanifli 
inonarchs took what was peculiar to each, and ftudied to unite them. 
By fending colonies to regions fo remote, by eflablifliing in each a 
form of interior policy and adminiftration, under diftinft governors, 
and wnth peculiar laws, they disjoined them from the mother coun- 
try. By retaining in their own hands the rights of legiflation, as 
well as that of impoling taxes, together with the power of nominating 
the perfons who filled every department of executive government, 
civil or military, they fecured their dependence upon the parent 
ilate. Happily for Spain, the fituation of her colonies was fuch, as 
rendered it poffible to reduce this new idea into praftice. Almoft 
all the countries which fhe had difcovered and occupied lay within 
the tropics. The produ£lions of that large portion of the globe are 
diiferent from thofe of Europe, even in its moft fouthern provinces. 
The qualities of the climate and of the foil naturally turn the in- 
duilry of fuch as fettle there into new channels. When the Spaniards 
firft took pofTeffion of their dominions in America, the precious metals 
which they yielded were the only objeft that attraded their attention. 
Even when their efforts began to take a better direftion, they em- 
ployed themfelves almoft wholly in rearing fuch peculiar productions 
of the climate, as, from their rarity or value, were of chief demand 
in the mother country. Allured by vaft profpe6ts of immediate 
wealth, they difdained to wafte their induftry on what was lefs lucra- 
tive, but of fuperior moment. In order to render it impofTible to 
correft this error, and to prevent them from making any efforts in 
induftry which might interfere with thofe of the mother country, 
the eftablifhment of feveral fpecies of manufadures, and even the 
culture of the vine, or olive, are prohibited in the Spanifh colonies, 
under fevere penalties. They mufl truft entirely to the mother 



country for the objeds of primary neceffity. Their clothes, their 
furniture, their inrtruments of labour, their luxuries, and even a 
confiderable part of the provifions which they confume, were im- 
ported from Spain. During a great part of the lixteenth century, 
Spain, poireiring an extenfive commerce and flourilliing manufac- 
tures, could fupply with eafe the growing demands of her colonies 
fr®m her own ftores. The produce of their mines and plantations 
vras given in exchange for thefe : but all that the colonies received, as 
well as all that they gave, was conveyed in Spanifh bottoms ; no 
veflel belonging to the colonies was ever permitted to carry the com- 
modities of America to Europe : even the commercial intercourfe of 
one colony with another was either abl'olutely prohibited, or limited 
by many jealous reftriftions. All that America yields flows into the 
ports of Spain ; all that it confumes muft iffue from them. No fo- 
reigner can enter its colonies without exprels permiffion ; no velTel 
of any foreign nation is received into their harbours ; and the pains 
of death, with confilcation of moveables, are denounced againft 
every inhabitant who prefumes to trade with them. Thus the colonies 
are kept in a itate of perpetual pupillage ; and by the introduftion 
of this commercial dependence, a refinement in policy, of which 
Spain fet the firft example to the European nations, the fupremacy 
of the parent ftate hath been maintained over remote colonies during 
more than two centuries and a half. 

Such are the maxims to which the Spanifli monarchs feem to 
have attended in forming their new fettlements in America : but they 
could not plant wjth the fame rapidity that they had deftroyed ; and, 
from many concurring cauies, their progrefs has been extremely 
flow in filling up the immenfe void which their devaftation had oc- 
cafioned. Migration and population has been fo much damped, that 
fixty years after the difcovery of the new world, the number oi 
Spaniards, in all its provinces, is computed not to have exceeded 
fifteen thoufand. 

The mode in which property was diftributed in the Spanifli colonies, 
and the regulations eftabliflied with refpect to the tranlmiffion of it, 
whether by defcent or by fale, were extremely unfavourable to po- 
pulation. In order to promote a rapid increafe of people in any 
Hew fettlement, property in land ought to be divided into fmall 
fiiares, and the alienation of it fliould be rendered extremely eafy. 
But the rapacioufnefs of the Spanifli conquerors of the new world 
paid no regard to this fundamental maxim of policy ; and, as they 

A a 2 poflefled 


poffefied power, which enabled them to gratify the utmoft extrava- 
gance of their wifhes, many feized diftri«5ls of great extent, and held 
them as encomicndas.. By degrees they obtained the privilege of 
converting a part of thefe into mayorafgos, a fpecies of fief, intro- 
duced into the Spanifli fyftem of feudal jurifprudence, which can 
neither be divided nor alienated. Thus a great portion of landed 
property, under this rigid form of entail, is withheld from circula- 
tion, and defcends from father to fon unimproved, and of little va- 
lue either to the proprietor or to the community. 

To this we may add, that the fupport of the enormous and ex- 
penlive fabric of their ecclefiaftical eftablifliment has been a burden 
on the Spanifli colonies, which has retarded the progrefs of popula- 
tion and induftry. The payment of tythes is a heavy tax on in- 
duftry ; and if the exaftion of them be not regulated and circum- 
fcribed by the wifdom of the civil magiftrate, it becomes intolerable 
and ruinous : but, inflead of any reftraint on the claims of ecclefi- 
aftics, the inconfiderate zeal of the Spanifli legiHators admitted them 
into America in their full extent, and at once impoled on their in- 
fant colonies a burden which is in no llight degree oppreffive to ib- 
ciety, even in its mofl improved ihite. 

By the famous regulations of Charles V. in 1542, the high pre- 
tenfions of the conquerors of the new world, who conlidered its 
inhabitants as flaves, to whofe lervice they had acquired a full right 
of property, were finally abrogated. From that period the Indians 
have been reputed freemen, and entitled to the pri'vilcgcs of fjihjeHs. 
When admitted into this rank, \i\v\\9, dee?7ied jujl^ that they fliould 
contribute towards the fupport and improvement of the fociety 
which had adopted them as members. But as no confiderable benefif 
could be expefted from the voluntary efforts of men unacquainted 
with regular induftry, and averfe to labour, the court of Spain 
found it necelfary to fix and fecure, by proper regulations, what it 
thought reafonable to exaift from them. With this view, an annual 
tax v/as impoftd upon every male from the age of eighteen to fifty ; 
and at the fame time, the nature as well as the extent of the fcrvices 
which they niight be required to perform were afccrtained with pre- 
cifion. This tribute varies in diucrent provinces; but if we take 
that paid in New-Spain as a medium, its annual amount is nearly 
four fliillings a head. Every Indian is either an immediate vaffal of 
the crown, or depends upon fome fubjeft to whom the diftrid in 
v.hith he rclidcs has beeu granted for a limited time, under the de- 


nomination of an tnco?menda. In the former cafe, about three-fourths 
of the tax is paid into the royal treafury; in the latter, the fame 
proportion of it belongs to the holder of the grant. 

The benefit arifing from the fcrvices of the Indians accrues either 
to the crown, or to the holder of the cncomitnda.^ according to the 
fame rule obferved in the payment of tribute : thofe fervices, how- 
ever, which can now be legally cxafted, are very different from the 
talks originally impufed upon the Indians. The nature of the work 
which they muft perform is defined, and a recompence is granted for 
their labour. The ftated fervices demanded of the Indians may be 
divided into two branches : they are cither employed in works of 
primary neceffity, without which fociety cannot fubfift comfortably, 
or are compelled to labour in the mines, from which the Spaniflx 
colonies derive their chief value and importance. In confequence of 
the former, they are obliged to affilt in the culture of maize and 
other grain of neceffary conlumption ; in tending cattle ; in erefting 
edifices of public utility ; in building bridges, and in forming high 
roads ; but they cannot be conftrained to labour in raifing vines, 
olives and fugar-canes, or any fpecies of cultivation, which has for 
its object the gratification of luxury or commercial profit. In con- 
fequence of the latter, the Indians are compelled to undertake the 
more unpleafant tails, of extrafting ore from the bowels of the earth,, 
and of refining it by fucceffive procelTes, no lefs unwholefome than 

The mode of exading both thefe fervices is the fame. The In- 
dians are called out fncceflively in divifions, termed Mitas, and no 
perfon can be compelled to go but in his turn. In Peru, the number 
called out mull: not exceed the feventh part of the inhabitants in any 
diftrift. In New-Spain, where the Indians are more numerous, it is 
fixed at four in the hundred. During what time the labour of fuch 
Indians as are employed in agriculture continues, we have not been 
able to learn : but in Pern, each mita, or divifion, deftined for the 
mines, remain* there fix months ; and while engaged in this fer- 
vice, a labourer never receives lefs than two fliillings a day, and often 
earns more than double that fum. No Indian, refiding at a greater 
diftance than thirty miles from a mine, is included in the mita, or 
divifion employed in working it; nor are the inhabitants of the 
low country compelled to remove from that warm climate to the 
«old elevated regions where minerals abound. 

I The 


The Indians who live in the principal towns are entirely fubjeift to 
the Spanifh laws and magiftrates, but in their own villages they arc 
governed by caziques, fome of whom are the defcendants of their 
ancient lords, others are named by the Spanifh viceroys. Thefe re- 
gulate the petty affairs of the people under them, according to max- 
ims tranlmitted to them by tradition from their anceftors. A certain 
portion of the referved fourth of the annual tribute is deflined for 
the falary of the caziques and protestors ; another is applied to the 
maintenance of the clergy employed in the inftruftion of the Indians. 
Aflother part feems to be appropriated for the ufe of the Indians 
themfelves, and is applied for the payment of their tribute in years 
of famine, or when a particular dillrift is affedted by any extraordi- 
nary local calamity. Befides this, provifion is made by various laws, 
that hofpitals fliall be founded in every new fettlement for the re- 
ception of Indians. Such hofpitals have accordingly been erefted, 
both for the indigent and infirm, in Lima, in Cuzco, and in Mexico, 
where the Indians, on the whole, may be faid to be treated with 
tendernefs and humanity. Such are the leading principles in the 
jurifprudence and policy by which the Indians are now governed in 
the provinces belonging to Spain. 

Together with the form of civil government in the Spanifh colo- 
nies, the peculiarities in their ecclefiailical conftltution merit confide- 
ration. Notwithftanding the fuperftitious veneration with which the 
Spaniards are devoted to the holy fee, the vigilant and jealous policy 
of Ferdinand early prompted him to take precautions againft the in- 
troduftion of the papal dominion into America. With this view, he 
folicited Alexander VI. for a grant to the crown of the tythes in all 
the newly-difcovered countries, which he obtained on condition of his 
making provifioa for the religious inftruftion of the natives. Soon 
after Julius II. conferred on him, and his fuccefibrs, the right of pa- 
tronage, and the abfolute difpofal of all ecclefiaftical benefices there. 
In confequence of thofe grants, the Spanifh monarchs have becoaje 
in effect the heads of the American church : in them the adminif- 
tration of its revenues is veiled, and their nomination of perfons to 
fupply vacant benefices is inftantly confirmed by the pope. Thus, 
in all SpaniQi America, authority of every fp.cics centers in the 
crown : there no collifion is known between Ipiritual and tem})oraI 
jurifdiaion ; the king is the only faperior, hi,- nnmc alone is heard of, 
and no dependence up.ou any foreign power hai been introduced. 



The hierarchy is eftabliflied in the fame form as in Spain, with 
Its full train of archbiflaops, bifhops, deans and other dignitaries. 
The inferior clergy are divided into three clafles, under the deno- 
mination of curas, doftrineros and miffioncros. The iiift are parifli 
priefts in thofe parts of the country where the Spaniards have fettled ; 
the fecond have the charge of fuch diftrids as are inhabited by In- 
dians fubjeaed to the Spanifli government, and living under its pro- 
tedtion ; the third are employed in inftrufting and converting thofe 
fiercer tribes which difdain fubmiffion to the Spaniih yoke, and live 
in remote or inacceflible regions, to which the Spanifli arms have not 
penetrated. So numerous are the ecclefiaftics of all thofe various 
orders, and fuch the profufe liberality with which many of them are 
endowed, that the revenues of the church in America arc immenfe. 

In viewing the ilate of colonies, where not only the number but 
influence of ecclefiaftics is fo great, the chara£ler of this powerful 
body is an objeft that merits particular attention. A confiderable 
part of the fecular clergy in Mexico and Peru are natives of Spain. 
As perfons long accufliomed, by their education, to the retirement 
and indolence of academic life are more incapable of aftive enter- 
prife, and Jefs difpofed to ftrike into new paths, than any order of 
men, the ecclefiaftical adventurers by whom the American church is 
recruited, are commonly fuch as, from merit or rank in life, 
have little profpeft of fuccefs in their own country. Accordingly, 
the fecular priefts in the new world are ftill lefs diftinguiflied than 
their brethren in Spain for literary accompliftiments of any fpecies ; 
and though, by the ample provifion which has been made for the 
American church, many of its members enjoy the eafe and inde- 
pendence which are favourable to the cultivation of fcience, the 
body of fecular clergy has hardly, during two centuries and a half, 
produced one author whofe works convey fuch ufefiil information, 
or poflefs fucli a degree of merit, as to be ranked among thofe 
which attraft the attention of enlightened nations. But the greateft 
part of the ecclefiaftics in the Spanifli fettlements are regulars. The 
firft: attempt to initruft and convert the Americans was made by 
monks, and, as foon as the conqueft of any provinee was completed, 
and its ecclefiaftical eftabliihment began to afTume feme form, the 
popes permitted the miffionaries of the four mendicant orders, as a 
reward for their fervices, to accept of parochial charges in America, 
to perform all fpiritual funftvons, and to receive the tythes and other 
emoluments of the benefice, without depending on the jurifdiiSlioa 



of the bifhop of the diocefe, or being fubjeft to his cenfures. L'S 
coiifequence of this, a new career of ufefulnefs, as well as new ob- 
je£ls of ambition, prefented themfelves. Whenever a call is made 
for a frefli fupply of miflionaries, men of the moft ardent and 
•afpiring minds, impatient under the reftraint of a cloifter, weary 
of its inlipid uniformity, and fatigued with the irkfeme repetition 
of its frivolous funftions, offer their fervice v.-ith erjgernefs, and re- 
pair to the new w^orld in queft of liberty and diftinftion : nor do 
they purfue diftindion without fuccefs ; the higheft ecclcfiallical ho- 
nours, as well as the moft lucrative preferments in Mexico and 
Peru, are often in the hands of regulars j and it is chiefly to the mo- 
rvaftic orders that the Americans are indtbled for any portion of 
fcience that is cultivated among them. They are almoft the only 
Spanifli ecclefiaftics from whom we have received any accounts, either 
of the civil or natural hiftory of the various provinces in America. 

From this brief furvey, fome idea may be formed of the interior 
ftate of the Spanifh colonies. The fyftem of commercial intercourfe 
between them comes next in order to be explained. If the dominions 
of Spain ia the new world had been of fuch moderate extent, as 
bore a due proportion to the parent ftate, the progrefs of her colo- 
nizing might have been attended with the fame benefit as that of 
other nations: but when, in lefs than half a century, her inconfi- 
derate rapacity had feized on countries larger than all Europe, her 
inability to fill fuch vaft regions with 3 number of inhabitants fufhci- 
ent for the cultivation of them, was fo obvious, as to give a wrong 
direftion to all the efforts of the colonifts. They did not form com- 
paft fettlements, where indiiftrj', circumfcribed within proper limits, 
both in its views and operations, is conduced with that fober, per- 
ievering fpirit, which gradually converts whatever is in its poffelTion 
to a proper ufe, nnd derives thence the greateft advantage. Inftead 
©f this, the Spaniards, feduced by the boundlefs profpeft vi'hich opened 
to them, divided their pofTeffions in America into governments of 
great extent. As their number was too fmall to attempt the regular 
culture of the immenfe provinces, v/hich they occupied rather than 
peopled, they bent their attention to a few objects, that allured them 
with hopes of fudden and exorbitant gain, and turned away with 
contempt from the humbler paths of induftry, which lead more 
flowly, but with greater certiunty, to vverJth and increafe of national 


Government, trade, 6cc. 185 

6f all the methods by which riches may be acquired, that of 
fearching for the precious metals is one of the moft inviting to men, 
who are either unaccuftomed to the regular affiduity with which the 
culture of the earth and the operations of commerce muft be carried 
on, or who are fo entcrprifing and rapacious as not to be fatisfied 
with the gradual returns of profit which they yield. Accordingly, as 
foon as the feveral countries in America were fubjedcd to the do- 
minion of Spain, this was almoft the only method of acquiring 
wealth which occurred to the adventurers by whom they were con- 
quered. Such provinces of the continent as did not allure them ta 
fettle, by the profpcft of their affording gold and filver, were totally 
neglecled. Thofe in which they met with a difappointment of the 
fanguine expectations they had formed were abandoned. Even the 
value of the illands, the iiiil-fruits of their difcoveries, and the firft 
objca of their attention, funk fo much in their eftimation, when 
the mines which had been opened in them were exhaiufted, that 
they were deferted by many of the planters, and left to be occupied 
by more induilrious polTeflbrs. All crowded to Mexico and Peru, 
where the quantities of gold and filver found among the natives, 
who fearched for them with little induftry and lefs Lkill, proniifed an 
unexhaufted ftore, as the recompence of more intelligent and perfe- 
vering efforts. 

During feveral years, the ardour of their refearches was kept up 
by hope rather than fuccefs. At length, the rich filver mines of 
Potofi, in Peru, were accidentally difcovered in the year 1 54$, by 
an Indian, as he was cliimbering up the mountain in purfuit of a 
llama which had ftrayed from his fiock. Soon after the m/mes of Si- 
cotecas, in New-Spain, little inferior to the other in value, were 
opened. From that time, fuccefTive difcoveries have been made la 
.-both colonies, and filver mines are nov/ fo numerous, that the work- 
ing of them, and of fome few mines of gold in the provinces or 
Tierra Firme, and the new kingdom of Granada, has become the 
sapital occupation of the Spaniards, and is reduced into a fyftera no 
lefs com.plicated than intcrefting. To defcribe the nature of the 
various ores, the mode of extrafling tbem from the bowels of the 
earth, and to explain the feveral procefTes by which the metals are 
feparated from the fubflances with which they are mingled, either by 
the a£tion of fire, or the attradive powers of mercury, is the pro- 
vince of the natural philofopher or chymilt, rather than of the 

Vol. IV. Bh The 

t86 observations on the 

The ejcuberant profufion with which the mountains of the new 
tvpild poured forth their treafures aftonifhed mankind, who had 
been hitherto accuilbmed to receive a penurious fupply of the pre- 
cious metals, from the more fcanty ftores contained in the mines of 
the ancient hemifphere. According to principles of computation, 
which appear to be extremely moderate, the quantity of gold and 
filver that has been regularly entered in the ports of Spain, is equal 
in value to four millions flerling annually, reckoning from the year 
1492, in which America was difcovered, to the prefent time. Immcnfe 
As this fum is, the Spanifh writers contend, that as much more 
ouo^ht to be added to it, in confideration of treafure which has been 
extrafted fiom the mines, and imported fraudulently into Spain 
without paying duty to the king. ]>y this account, Spain has drawn 
from the new world a fupply of wealth, amounting to more than 
two thoufand millions of pounds flerling. 

The mines, which have yielded this amazing quantity of treafure, 
are not worked at the expenfe of the crown, or of the public. In 
order to encourage private adventurers, the perfon who difcovers 
and works a new vein is entitled to the property of it. Upon laying 
his claim to fuch a difcovery before the governor of the province, a 
certain extent of land is meafured off, and a certain number of In- 
dians allotted him, under the obligation of his opening the mine 
within a limited time, and of his paying the cnftomaiy duty to the 
king for what it fliall produce. Invited by the facility with which 
fuch grants are obtained, and encouraged by fome ftriking examples 
of fuccefs in this line of -adventure, not only the fanguine and the 
bold, but the timid and diffident, enter upon it with aftonifliing ar- 
dour. The charms of this purfuit, like the rage for deep play, arc 
fo bewitching, and take fuch full pcfTellion of the mind, as even to 
give a nev/ bent to the natural temper. Under its influence the 
cautious become enterprifing, .and the covetous profufe. Powerlul as 
this charm naturidly is, its force is augmented by the arts of an or- 
der of miCn known m Peru by the cant name oVfearchen : thefe are 
commonly pcrlbns of defpcrate fortunes, who availing themfelves of 
fome fidll in minfralogv, accompanied with the infinuating manner 
and confident pi ctcufions peculiar to projei^'tors, addrefs the Wealthy 
and the credulous : by plaufible defcriptious of the appearances 
ivhich they have difcovered of rich veins hitheito unexplored ; by 
produoiiig, when reqiiifite, fpecimens of j)romifing ore ; by aflirni- 
'Hg, with an impofiug aflurancc, tliat fu^ccfs is certain, aa'd that the 



cxpenfe trnift be trifling, they feldom fail to perfunde ; an aflbcia- 
tion is forjiicd, a fmall l\im is advanced by each co-partner, the mine 
is opened, the fearcher is entrulled with the folc direftion of every 
operation, unforefeen difficulties occur, new demands of money are 
made, .but aniidft a fucceffien of diiappoimments and delays, 
hope is never extinguiflied, and the ardour of expcdation hardly 

Such is the fpirit that muft be formed, wherever the aftive exer- 
tions of any fociety are chiefly employed in working mines ot gold 
and filver. No fpirit is more advcrfe to fuch inipi (n ement in agri- 
culture and commerce, as render a nation really opulent. 

But in the Spanifli colonies, goveniment is iludioui. to cherifli a 
fpirit which it fliould have laboured to deprefs, and by the fandtion 
of its approbation, augments that inconfideratc credulity which has 
turned the aifiive indultry of Mexico and Peru into fuch an improper 
channel. To this may be imputed the flender progrefs which Spanlfli 
America has made during two centuries and a half, either in ufeful 
manufat^ures, or in thofe lucrative brancnes of cultivation which 
furnifli the colonies of other nations v/ith their ftaple commo- 
dities. ■ 

As the aftivity and enterprife of the Spaniards originally took this 
direction, it i:i now fo difticult to bend them a different way, that al- 
though trom various caufes, the gain of working mines is much de- 
crealed, the f^fcinatlon continues, and almoft every perfon who takes 
any active part in the commerce of ivIew-Spain or FerUj is iliil en- 
gaged in fome adventure of fhis kind. ■ 

But though mines are the chief ohj.tT: of the Spaniards, and the 
precious metals which thefe yield form the principal article in their 
commerce with America, the ferti e countries which they poflefs 
there abound with other comni ditie of fuch value or fcaici;y, as 
to attrad a confiderabie degree of attention. Cochiui'al is a produc- 
tion almoft peculiar to New-Spain, of fuch demand in commerce, 
that the fale i^ always certain, and it yields inch proflt as amply re- 
wards the labour and caie employed in rearing the curious infects of 
which this valuable drug is compofed, and preparing it for the 
market. Quinquina, or jefuit'i bark, the moil falutary fimple, per- 
haps, and of mofl refton.tive virtue, that Pjovidence has made 
known unto man, is found only in Peru, to which it uftbrds a 
lucrative branch of commerce. J he indigo of Guatimala is lupe- 
rior in quality to that of any province in America, and cultivated 
to a confiderabie extent. Cacoa, though not peculiar to tlie 

B b a Spanifli 


Spanifh colonies, attains to its higheft ftate of perfeftion there, and! 
fiom the great confumption of chocolate in Europe, as well as in 
America, is a valuable commodity. The tobacco of Cubs, of more 
exquifite flavour than any brought from the new world ; the fugar 
raifed in that ifland, in Hifpaniola, and in New-Spain, together with 
drugs of various kinds, maybe mentioned among the natural proT 
duftions of America, which enrich the Spanifli cornmerce, Tothefe 
muft be added, an article of no inconfiderable account, the exporta- 
tion of hides, for which, as well as for many of thofe enumerated, 
the Spaniards are more indebted to the wonderful fertility of the 
country than to their own forelight and induftry. The domeftic 
animals of Europe, particularly horned cattle, have multiplied in the 
new world with a rapidity which almoft exceeds belief. A few years 
after the Spaniards fettled there, the herds of tame cattle became fo 
numerous, that their proprietors, as we have before pbferved, reck-- 
oned them by thoufmds. Lefs attention being paid to them as they 
continued to increaie, they were fuffered to run wild, and fpreading 
over a country of boundlefs extent, under a mjld climate, and co- 
vei-ed with rich pafture, their number became immenfe. They 
range over the vait plains which extend from Buenos Ayres towards 
the Andes, in herds of thirty or forty thoufand ; and the unlucky 
traveller who once falls in among them, may proceed feveral days 
before he can difentangle himfelf from among the crowd that covers 
the face of the earth, and feems to have no end. They are hardly 
lefs numerous in New-Spain, and in feveral other provinces ; they 
are killed merely for the lake of their hides ; and the daughter at cer- 
tain feafons: great, that the flench of the carcafes which are left in 
the field wouid \nfc£t the air if large packs of wild dogs, and vaft flocks 
of gallinazos, or American vultures, the mod voracious of all the fea- 
thered kind, d;d not inftantly devour them. The number of thofe 
hides exported in every fleet to Europe is very great, and is a lucra- 
tive branch of commerce. 

Almod all thefe may be confidered as ftaple commodities peculiar 
to America, and different, if we except that laft mentioned, from the 
produi^lions of ?pain. 

When the importation into Spain of thofe various articles from 
her Gjlonies fi;fl: became acftive and confiderable, her interior induflry 
and manufad nres were in a flate fo profperous, that with the produft 
of thefe fhe was able both to purchafe the commodities of the new 
world, and to anfwer its growing demands. Under the reigns of 



Ferdinand and Ifabella, and Charles V. Spain was one of the moft 
induftrious countries in Europe ; her manufnftiircs in wool, and 
flax, and fiik, were fo cxtenfive, as not only to furnifh what was fuf- 
ficient for her own confumption, but to aflford a furplus for exporta- 
tion. When a market for them, formerly unknown, and to which 
Ihe alone had acceCs, opened in America, fhe had recourfe to her do- 
meftic ftore, and found there an abundant fupply. Tliis new em- 
ployment muft naturally have added vivacity to the fpiiit of in- 
duftry ; nouriihed and invigorated by it, the manufadhires, the po- 
pulation, and wealth of Spain might have gone on increaling in the 
fame proportion wi^h the growth of her colonies ; but various caufes 
prevented this. The fame thing happens to nations as to individuals. 
Wealth, which flows in gradually, and with moderate increafe, feec's 
and nouriflics that aftivity which is friendly to comm.erce, and calls it 
forth into vigorous and weli-condufted exertions ; but when opu- 
lence pours in fuddenly, and with too full a flream, it overturns all 
fober plans of induftry, and brings along with it a tafte for what is 
wild and extravagant, and daring in bulinefs or in adion. Such was 
the great and fudden augmentation of power and revenue that the 
poflelTion of America brought into Spain ; and fome fymptoms of its 
pernicious influence upon the political operations of that monarchy 
foon began to appear. 

When Philip II. afcended the Spanlfli throne, with talents far infe- 
rior to thofe pf his father, and remittances from the colonies became 
a regular and conHderable branch of revenue, the fatal operation of 
this rapid change in the flate of the kingdom, both on the monarch 
and his people, was at opce confpicuous. Philip, pofieffing that fpirit 
of unceafing alTiduity, which often eharafterifes the ambition of men 
of moderate talents, entertained fuch an high opinion of his own re- 
fources, that he thought nothing too arduous for him to undertake ; 
fliut up himfelf in t!,e folitude of the efcurial, he troubled and an- 
noyed all the nations around him. He waged open war with the 
Dutch and Englifli ; he encouraged ;md aided a rebellious fadion in 
France ; he conquered Portugal, and maintained armies and garri- 
fons in Italy, Africa, and both the Indies. By fuch a multiplicity of 
great and complicated operations, purfued vvith ardour duiing the 
courfe of a long reign, Spain was drained both of men and moi-o-y. 
Under the weak adminiftration of his fucceflbr, Philip III. the vigour 
of the nation continued to decreafe, and funk into the loxveft decline, 
when the inconfiderate bigotry of that monarch expelled at once near 

a miJlion 


a million of his moll induftrious fubjefts, at the very tiaie when the 
exhaufteJ flate of the kingdom required Ibme extraordinary exertioa 
of political vviidpm to ai'gment its numbers, and to revive its flrength. 
tarly in the feventeenth century, Spain fek fuch a diminution in the 
number of her people, that from inability to recrui'' her armies, Ihe 
was obliged to contraft her operations ; her llounihuig m.uiufa<ftures 
ivei a fallen into decay ; her fleets, which had been the terror of all 
Europe, were ruined ; her exteniive foreign commerce was iofl ; 
the trade between ditfercnt parts of her own dgrninions was inter- 
rupted, and the fliips which attempted to carry it on, were taken ^nd 
plundered' by enemies whom flie once defpifed. Even agricul- 
ture, the primary objeft of indufiry in every profperous (late, was 
iiegleded, and one of the moft fertile countries in Europe hardly 
raifed whnt was fufficient for the fupport of its own inhabitants. 

In proportion as the population and manufaftures of Spam declined, 
the demands of her colonies continued to increaie. The Spaniards, 
like their roonarchs, intoxicated with the wealth which poured in an- 
nually upon them, deferted the paths of induilry, to which they had 
been accuftomed, and repaired with eagernefs to thofe regions from 
whence this opulence ill'ued. By this rage of emigration, another drain- 
was opened, and the flrength of the colonies augmented by exhauiUng 
that of the mother country. 

Spain, thinned of people, and decreafing in induflry, was unable 
to fupply the growing demands of her colonies j flie had rccourfe to 
her neighbours ; the manufaftures of the Low Countries, of England, 
of France, and of Italy, which her wants called into exitUnce, or 
animated with new vivacity, furniflied in abundance whatever flie re- 
cjnircd. In vidn did the fundamental law, concerning the exclufion 
of foreigners from trade with America, oppofe this innovation. Ne- 
ceffity, more powerful than any ftatute, defeated its operation?, and 
tonflrained the Spaniards themlelvcs to concur in eluding it. The Eng- 
lifli,theFrei ch, and Dutch, relying on the fidelity and honour of Spanifh 
merchants, who lend 'heir to cover the deceit, continue to fend 
out their manufadures to America, and received the exorbitant price 
for which they are fold there, either in fpecie, or in the rich commodi- 
ties of the new world. Neither the dread of danger, nor the allure- 
meat of profit, ever induced a Spanifli fador to betray or defraud the 
perfon who confided in him; and that probity, which is thcpi ide and 
diitinc^ion ol the nation, contributes to its ruin. The treafure of the 
new world msy thciefore be faid not to belong to Spam ; before it 



peaches Europe, it is anticipated as the price of goods purchafed from 

TI1U- the poflelTions- of Spain in America have not proved a fomxe 
of population and of wealth to her, in the fame manner as thofe of 
othei uatio-'s. In the countries of Europe, where the fpirit of in- 
diiftry fu^jfifts in full vitrcnir, every perfon fettled in fucli colonies as 
are fidjihr in' tlieir fituation to thofe of Spain, is fuppofed to give 
employment to three or four at home in fupplying his wants. But 
wherever the mother country cannot afford this fupply, every emi- 
grant may be confidercd as a citizen loft to the community, and 
ftrangers mufi: reap all the bcnelit of anfwering his demands. Such 
has been the internal llatc of Spain from the clofe of the fixteenth 
century, and fnch her inability to fupply the growing wants of her 

The fatal effects of the difproportion between their demands, and 
her capacity nf aniwering them, have been much increafed by the 
mode in wliich Spain has endt-avouvcd to regulate the intercourfe be- 
tween the mother country and the colonies. It is from her idea of 
monopolizing the trade with An;erica, and debarring her fubjefts 
there from any communication with foreigners, that all her jealous 
and fyftenratic arrangements iuve arifenfthcfe are fo lingular in their 
nature and coni'equentes, as to merit a particular explanation. In 
order to fee u re the m'^nopoly at which Hie aimed, Spain did not veft 
the trade w-ith colonies in an exchifive company, a plan which 
has been adopted by nations more commercial, and at a period when 
mercantile policy was an objeft of greater attention, and ought to 
have been better und-.;; flood. The Dutcli gave up the whole trade 
with their colonies, both in the I- aft and Weft-Indies, to exclufive 
companies. "1 he Eng'ifli, the i-rench, and the Danes, have imita- 
ted their example with rc-fpeft to the Eaft-Indian commerce, and the 
two former have laid a limilar reftraint upon feme branches of their 
trade with the new world. The w:t of man cannot, perhaps, devif© 
a method for checking the progrefs of induftry ;ind population in a 
new colony more effectual than this. The iutereft of the colony, 
and of the exclufive company, muft in every point be diamfetrically 
oppofite ; and as the latter pofTefles fuch advantages in this unequal 
conteft, that it can prefcribe at pleafure the terms of intercourfe, 
the former mi'.ft not only buy dear and fell cheap, but muft futfer 
the mortification of having the increafe of its lurplus Itodt difcou- 

2 raged 

jgz OBSERVAtioNs o^^ the 

ragpd by thofe very perfons to whom alone it can difpofe of its pro^ 

Spain, it is probable, was preferved- from falling into this error in 
policy, by the high ideas which fhe early formed concerning the 
riches of the new world. Gold and filver were commodities of too 
high a value to veil a monopoly of them in private hands. The 
crown wiilied to retain the direftion of a commerce fo inviting, and 
in order to fecure that, ordained the cargo of every ftiip fitted out 
for America, to be infpefted by the officers of the Cafa de Contrata*- 
cion in Seville, before it could receive a licence to make the voyage ; 
and that on its return, a report of the commodities which it brought 
lliould be made to the fame board, before it could be permitted to 
land them. In confequence of this regulation, all the trade of Spain 
with the new wOrld centered originally in the port of Seville, and 
was gradually brought into a form, in \vhich it has been condu»Sed 
with little variation from the middle of the fixfeenth century, al- 
moft to our own times. For the greater fecurity of the valuable 
cargoes fent to America, as well as for the more eafy prevention of 
fraud, the commerce of Spain, with its colonies, was carried on by 
fleets which lailed under ftrong convoys ; thcfe fleets confiiled of two 
fquadrous, one diftingui filed by the name of the galleons, the other 
by that of the flota, are equipped annually. Formerly they took 
their departure from Seville, but as the port of Cadiz has been 
found more commodious, they have failed from it fince the year 

The galleons deftined to fupply Terra Firma, and the kingdoms 
of Peru and Chili, with almoft every article of luxury or necoflary 
confumption that an opulent people can demand, touch fiift at 
Carthagena, and then at Porto Bello ; to the former, the merchants 
of Santa Martha, Garaccas, the new kingdom of Granada, and feve- 
ral other provinces refort ; the latter is the great mart for the rich 
commerce of Peru and Chili. At the feafon when the galleons are 
expedfed, the product of all the mines in thefe two kingdoms, toge- 
ther with their other valuable commodities, is tranfported by fca to 
Panama ; from thence, as foon as the appearance of the fleet from 
Europe is announced, they are conveyed acrofs the iilhmus, partly 
on mules, and partly down the river Chagrc to Porto Bello. This 
paltry village, the climate of which, from the pernicious union of 

* Smith's Inquiry, ii. 171, 



exceffive heat, continual moifture, and the putrid exhalations arifing 
from a rank foil, is more fatal to life than r.ny perhaps in the known 
world, is immediately filled with people. From being the rclldence 
of a few negroes and mulattges, and of a miferable garriibn relieved 
every three months, Porto Bello affumes fuddenly a very different 
afpe£t, and its ftreets are crowded with opulent merchants from 
every corner of Peru, and the adjacent provinces ; a fair is opened, 
the wealth of America is exchanged for the manufaftures of Europe ; 
and during its prefcribed term, as we have before obferved, the 
richeft traffic on the face of the earth is begun and finilhed, with that 
fnnplicity of tranfaftion and that unbounded confidence which ac- 
companies extenfive commerce. The flota holds its courfe to Vera 
Cruz. The treafurcs and commodities of New-Spain, and the de- 
pending provinces, which were depofited at Puebla de los Angeles, 
in expeftation of its arrival, are carried thither, and the commercial 
operations of Vera Cruz, conducted in the fame manner with thofe 
of Porto Bello, are inferior to them only in importance and va- 
lue. Beth fleets, as foon as they have completed their cargoes from 
America, rendezvous at the Havannah, and return in company to 

The trade of Spain with her colonies, while thus fettered and re- 
ftrifted, came necefiarily to be conduced with the fame fpirit, and 
upon the fame principles as that of an exclufive company. Being con* 
fined to a fingle port, it was of courfe thrown into a few hands, and 
alnioft the whole of it wr.s gradually engrofled by a fmall number of 
wealthy houfes, formerly in Seville and now in Cadiz. Thefe, by 
combinations which they can eafily form, may altogether prevent that 
competition which preferves commodities at their natural price ; and 
by ading in concert, to wlxich they are prompted by their mutual 
intereft, they may raife or lov^er the value of them at pleafure ; in 
confequence of this, the price of European goods in America is al- 
ways high, and often exorbitant. A hundred, two hundred, and 
and even three hundred per cent, are profits not uncommon in the 
commerce of vSpain with her colonies. From the fame ingroffing 
fpirit it frequently happens, that traders of the fecond order, whofe 
warehoufes do not contain a complete afTortment of commodi- 
ties for the American market, cannot purchafe from the more opulent 
merchants fuch goods as they want, at a lower price than that for 
which they arc fold In the colonics. With the fame vigilant jealoufy 
that an exclufive company guards againfl the intrufion of the free 

Vol. IV. C c trader, 


trader, whofe overgrown monopolifts endeavour to check the pro- 
grefs of every one whofe incroachments they dread.* This reftraint 
of the American commerce to one portj not only afFefts its domeftic 
ftate, but limits its foreign operations. A monopolift may acquire 
more, and certainly will hazard lefs by a confined trade which yields 
exorbitant profit, than by an extenfive commerce in which he re- 
ceives only a moderate return of gain. It is often his intereft not to 
enlarge, but circumfcribe the fphere of his activity,' and inftead of 
calling forth more vigorous exertions of commercial induftry, it may 
be the objedl of his attention to check and fet bounds to them. By 
fome fuch maxim the mercantile policy of Spain Lems to have regu- 
lated its intercourfe with America. Inftead of furnifliing the colo* 
nies with European goods in fuch quantity as might render both the 
price and the profit moderate ; the merchants of Seville and Cadiz 
feem to have fupplied them with a fparing hand, that the eagernefs 
of competition amongfl: cuftomers obliged to purchafe jn a icanty 
market, might enable the Spnnilh factors to dilpofe of their cargoes 
with exorbitant gain. About the middle of the laft century, when the 
exclufivc trade to America from Seville was in its mod flourifliing 
flate, the burden of the two united fquadrons of the galleons and 
flota did not exceed twenty-fevcn thoufand five hundred tons. The 
iupply which fuch a tieet could carry, muH: have been very inadequate 
to the demands of thofe populous and extenfive colonies, which de- 
pended upon it for all the luxuries, and many of the neceflfaries of 

Spain early became fenfible of her declenfion from her former 
proiperity, and many refpeftable and virtuous citizens employed 
their thoughts in devifing methods for reviving the decaying in- 
duftry and commerce of their country. From the violence of the 
remedies propofed, it is evident how defperate and fatal the ma- 
lady appeared. 

Befides wild projcfts, many fchemes, well-digefted and beneficial, 
were fuggefted; but under the feeble monarchs with whom the reign 
of the Auftrian line in Spain doled, incapacity and indecifion are con- 
fpicuous in every department of government. Inftead of taking tor 
their model the active adminilfration of Charles V. they aftCLlcd to 
- imitate the cautious procraflinating wifdom of Philip 11. and dcftitute 
of his talent:, they deliberated perpetually, but determined nothitig. 

* Sniidi'i Inquiry, ii. 171. 


No remedy was applied to the evils under which the national com-- 
merce, domeftic as well as foreign, languiflied. Thefe evils continued 
to increafe, and Spain, with dominions more exteniive and more 
opulent than any European ftate, poflefled neither vigour, nor mo- 
ney, nor indullry. At length the violence of a great national con- 
vulficn ronfed the flumbering genius of Spain. The eftorts of the 
two contending parties in the civil war, kindled by the difpute con- 
cerning the fucceffion of the crown at the beginning of this century, 
called forth, in fome degree, the ancient fpirit and vigour of the 

As foon as the Bourbons obtained quiet poffeffion of the throne, 
they difcerned this change in the fpirit of the people, and took ad- 
vantage of it. It was the nrft objeft of Philip V. to fupprefs an inno- 
vation which had crept in during the courfe of the war, and had over- 
turned the whole fyftem of the Spanifli commerce with America. The 
Englifli and Dutch, by their fuperiority in naval power, having ac- 
quired fuch command of the fea, as to cut off all intercourfe between 
Spain and her colonies ; Spain, in order to furnifli her fubje6ts in Ame- 
rica with thofe neceffaries of life, without which they could not exift, 
and as the only means of receiving from thence any part of their trea- 
fure, departed fo far from the ufual rigour of its maxims, as to open 
the trade with Peru to her allies the French. The merchants of St. 
Male, to whom Louis XIV. granted the privilege of this lucrative 
commerce, engaged in it with vigour, and carried it on upon prin- 
ciples very different from thofe of the Spaniards. They fupplied 
Peru with European commodities at a moderate price, and not in 
flinted quantity. The goods which they imported were conveyed 
to every province of Spanifli-America in fuch abundance as had never 
been known in any former period. If this intercourfe had been con- 
tinued, the exportation of European commodities from Spain mnfl 
have ceafed, and the dependence of the colonies on the mother 
country have been at an end. The moff peremptoi^y injundions 
were therefore ifTued, prohibiting the admillion of foreign velTels into 
any port of Peru or Chili, and a Spanilh fquadron was employed 
to clear the South fea of intruders, whofe aid was no longer ne- 

But though on the celTation of the war, which was terminated by 
the treaty of Utrecht, Spain obtained relief from one incroachment 
on her commercial fyrtem, flie was expofed to another, which (lie 
deemed hardly lefs pernicious. As an inducement that might prevail 

C c ^ with 


with Queen Anne to conclude -a peace, which France and Spain de. 
fired with equal ardour, Philip V. not only conveyed to Great-Britain 
the Affiento, or contra6t for fupplying the Spanifli colonies with 
negroes, which had formerly been enjoyed by France, but granted 
jt the more extraordinary privilege of fending annually to the fair of 
Porto Bello, a fhip of five hundred tons, laden with European com- 
rnodities. In confequence of this, Britifli faftories were eflabliflied 
at Carthagena, Panama, Vera Cruz, Buenos Ayres, and other Spa- 
nifli fettlements. The veil with which Spain had hitherto covered 
the flate and tranfaiflions of her colonies was removed. The agents 
of a rival nation, refiding in the towns of mofl extenfive trade, and of 
chief reiort, had the beit opportunities of becoming acquainted with 
the interior condition of the American provinces, of obferving their 
ftated and occafional wants, and of knowing what commodities might 
be imported into them with the greateil advantage. In confequence 
cf information fo authentic and expeditious, the merchants of Ja- 
maica and other Englilh colonies who traded to the Sp inifli main, 
were enabled to alTort and proportion their cargoes fo exaftly to the 
demands of the market, that the contraband commerce was carried 
on with a facility, and to an extent unknown in any former period. 
This, however, was not the mofi: fatal confequence of the AfTiento 
to the trade of Spain. The agents of the Britifli South fea company, 
under cover of the importation which they were authorifed to make 
by the fliip fent annually to Porto Eello, poured in their commodi- 
'tieson the Spanifn continent, without limitation orreflraint. Inflead 
of a fiiip of five hundred tons, as flipulated in the treaty, they 
ufually employed one which exceeded nine hundred tons in burden • 
file v.-as accompanied by two or three fmaller vefTels, which mooring 
in fome neighbouring creek, fupplied her clandeflinely with frefli 
bales ofgoodp, to replace fach as v.-ere fold. The infpeftors of the 
fair, and oflicers of the revenue, gained by exorbitant prefents, con- 
nived at the fraud. Thus, partly by the operations of the company, 
and partly by the adivity of private interlopers, almoft the whole 
trade of Spanifli- America v/as IngrofTed by foreigners. The im- 
nier.fe con merce of the galleons, formerly the pride of Spain, and 
^he envy of othci- nations, funk to nothing, and the fquadron itfelf 
reduced 'acm tiftccn thoufand to two thoufand tons, ierved hardly 
any purpoic but to fetch home the royal revenue arifing from the 
fifth on hlver, 

I While 


While Spain obferved thofe incroachments, and felt their pernici- 
ous eifefl:';, it \\\'.i irnpoffible not to make fome effort to reftrain them. 
Her tirft expedn^nt was to ftarion fhips offeree, under the appellatioa 
ofguarda coltas, iip'.>n the coalls of thole provinces, to which inter- 
lopers moft frequently reforted. Some check was by this means 
given to the progrefs of the contraband trauc, though in dominions 
fo extenlive, and fo acceffible by fe.i, har My any numbi-r of cruifers 
vpas fufi^:ient to guard- again ft its inroads in every quarteT. This in- 
terruption of an iniercourfe which had been carried on with fo much 
fucihty, that the merchants in the Britlfli colonies were accuftomed 
to confu'er it almoft fas an allowed branch of commerce, excited 
murmurs and complaints. Thcfe authorikd in fome meafure, and 
rendered more interelling, by feveral.unjuftifiable a6ts of violence 
committed by the captains of the Spanjih guarda coftas, precipitated 
Great-Britain into a war with Spain, in confequence of which the 
latter obtained a final releafe from the Affiento, and was left at liberty 
to regulate the commerce of her colonies, without being reflrained 
by any engagement vv^ith a foreign power. 

As the formidable incroachments of the Englifh on the American 
trade had difcovered to the Spaniards the vaft confumption of Eu- 
ropean goods in their colonies, and taught them the advantage of ac- 
commodating their importations to the occalional demand of the va- 
rious provinces, they perceived the necellity of deviling fome me- 
thod of fupplyir.g their colonies, different from their ancient one, of 
fending thither periodical fleets. That mode of communication had 
been found not only to be uncertain, as the departure of the galleons 
and flota was fomt'times retarded by various accidents, and often, 
prevented by the wars which rnged in Europe; but long experience 
had fliewn it to be ill adapted to atford America a regular and timely 
fupply of what it wanted. The fcarcity of European goods in the 
Spanifti fettlements frequently became exceffive ; their price rofe to 
an enormous height ; the vigilant eye of mercantile attention did not 
fail to obferve this favourable opportunity, an ample fupply was 
poured in by interlopers from the Englifli, the French, and Dutch 
iflands ; and when the galleons at length arrived, they found the 
markets fo glutted by this illicit commerce, that there was no de- 
mand for the commodities with which they were loaded. In order 
to remedy this, Spain has permitted a confidcrable part of her com- 
merce with America to be carried on by regifter fliip-. Thefe are 
fitted out during the intervals between the ftated fcafons when the 



galleons and flora fail, by merchants in Seville or Cadiz, upon ob- 
taining a licence from the council of the Indies, for which they pay a 
yery high premium, and are defined for thofe ports in America 
where any extraordinary demand is forefeen or expefled. By this 
expedient, fuch a regular fupply of the commodities, for which there 
is the greateft demand, is conveyed to the American market, that 
the interloper is no longer allured by the fame profpeft of exceffive 
gain, or the people in the colonies urged by the fame neceffity to en- 
gage in the hazardous adventures of contraband trade. 

In proportion as experience manifefted the advantages of carrying 
oa trade in this mode, the number of regiiter fhips increafed, and 
at length, in the year 1748, the galleons, after having been em- 
ployed upwards of two centuries, were finally laid afide. From that 
period there has been no intercou rfe with Chili and Peru but by 
fingle (liips, difpatched fi'om .time to time as occafion requires, and 
when the merchants expt6t a profitable market will open. Thefe 
fhips fail round cape Horn, and convey direftly to the ports in the 
South fea the produftions and manufaftures of Europe, for which 
the people fettled in thofe countries were formerly obliged to repair 
to Porto Bello or Panama. Thefe towns, as has been formerly ob- 
lerved, muft gradually decline, when deprived of that commerce to 
which tliey owed their profperity. This difadvantage, however, is 
more than compenfated by the beneficial eftefts of this new arrange- 
ment, as the whole continent of ScHJth-America receives new fupplies 
•of European commodities with fo much regularity, and in fuch 
abundance, as mufl not only contribute greatly to the happinefs, 
but increafe the population of all the colonies fettled there. But as 
all the regifter fliips deftined foir the South feas muft ftill take their 
departure from Cadiz, and are obliged to return thither, this branch 
of the American commerce, even in its new and improved form, con- 
ti-iiues fuhjeft to the reftraints of a ipecies of monopoly, and feela 
^U the pernicious effects of it. 

Among the new tades which the people of Europe have acquired. 
In confequence of importing the produL^lions of thofe countries 
'Sft'hich they conquered in America, that for chocolate is one of the 
moft univerfal. The ufe of this liquor, made with a pafte formed 
of the nut or almond of the cacoa tree, compounded with various 
ingredient?, the Spaniards firft learned from the Mexicans ; and it 
has appeared to them, and to the other European nations, fo pala- 
;,ib|e, fo ivjuiifliing, and fo whoiefoiiie, that it has become a com-f 



tr.crcial article of confidcrable importance. The cacoa tree grows 
fpontaneoufly in I'everal parts of the torrid zone, but the nuts of 
the bell: quality, next to thofe of Guatiinala, on the South fea, ar« 
produced in the rich plains of Caraccas, a province of Terra Firma^ 
In confequcnce of this acknowledged fuperiority in the quality of 
cacoa in that province, and its communication with the Atlantic, 
which facilitates the conveyance to Europe, the culture of the cacoa 
there is more extenlive than in any diftrift of America. But the 
Dutch, by the vicinity of their fettlements in the fmall ifiands of 
Curazoa and Buen-Ayre, to the coaft of Caraccas, gradually en- 
grofled the greateft part of the cacoa trade. The traffic w ith the 
mother country for this valuable commodity ceafed almoft entirely, 
and fuch was the fupine negligence of the Spaniards, or the defects 
of their commercial arrangements, thnt they were obliged to receive 
from the hands of foreigners this production of their own colonies 
at an exorbitant price. In order to remedy an evil no lefs diforace- 
ful than pernicious to his fubjefts, Philip V. in the year 1728, trranted 
to a body of merchants an excluilve right to the commerce with Ca- 
raccas and Cumana, on condition of their employing, at their own 
expenfe, a fufficient number of armed veffels to clear the coaft 
of interlopers. This fociety, diftinguiflied fometimes bv the name 
of the Company of Guipufcoa, from the province of Spain in which 
it is eftabliflicd, and fometimes by that of the Company of Caraccas, 
from the diilri'fl of America to which it trades, has carried on its 
operations with fuch vigour and fuccefs, that Spain has i-ecovered aa 
important branch of commerce, vchich flie had fuffered to be wrciled 
from her, and is plentifully fupplied with an article of extenfive 
confumption at a moderate price. Not only the parent Hate, but the 
colony of Caraccas, has derived great advantages from this inllitu- 
tion ; for although, at the firft afpecf, it may appear to be one of 
thofe monopolies, whofe tendency is to check the fpirit of induftry, 
inftead of calling it forth to new exertions, it has been prevented 
from operating in this manner by feveral falutary regulations, framed 
upon forefight of fuch br.d eife;51s, and of purpofe to obviate them. 
The planters in the Caraccas are not left to depend entirely on the 
company, either for the importation of European commodities, or 
the fnle oi' their own productions. The inhabitants of the Canary 
illands have the privilege of fending thither annually a reoifter- 
ihip of confidcrable burden ; and from Vera Cruz, in New- 
Spaii;, a free trade is perniitred in every port comprehended in the 



charter of the company. In confequence of this, there is fuch a 
competition, that, both with'refpeft to what the colonies purchafe, and 
what they fell, the price feems to be fixed at its natural and equitable 
rate. The company has not the power of railing the former, or of 
degrading the latter at pleafure ; and accordingly, fince it was ella- 
bliflied, the increafe of culture, of population, and of live frock, in 
the province of Caraccas^ has been very confiderable. 

While Spain adhered with rigour to her ancient maxims concerning 
her commerce with America, Hie was {o much afraid of opening any 
channel, by which an illicit trade might find admiffion into the colo- 
nies, that {he almoit flint herfelf out from any intercourfe with 
them, but that which was carried on by her annual fleets. There was 
no eftablifliment for a regular communication of either public or 
private intelligence between the mother country and its American 
fettlements. From the want of this necefTary inftitution, the opera- 
tions of the frate, as well as the bufinefs of individuals, were re- 
tarded or conduced unlkilfully, and Spain often received from fo- 
reio^ners her firft information with refpeft to very interelling events 
in her own colonies. But though this defect in police was fenfibly 
felt, and the remedy for it was obvious, that jealous fpirit with which 
the Spauifli monarchs guarded the exclufive trade, reftrained them 
from applying it. At length Charles III. furmounted thofe confide- 
rations which had deterred his predcceiTors, and in the year 1764 
appointed packet-boats to be difpaiched on the firft dny of each month 
from Corunna to the Havannah or Porto Rico. From thence letters 
are conveyed in fmaller vefTels to Vera Cruz and Porto Bello, and 
tranfraitted by poft through the kingdoms of Terra Firma, Granada, 
"Peru and New-Spain. With no lefs regularity packet-boats fail once 
in two months to Rio de la Plata, for the accommodation of the pro- 
vinces to the eaft of die Andes. Thus provifion is made for a fpeedy 
and certain circulation of intelligence throughout the vaft dominions 
of Spain, from which equal advantages muft redound to the political 
•and mercantile intereft of the kir.gdom. With this new arrange- 
ment, a fchcme of extending commerce has been more immediately 
connected. Each of the packet-boats, which are vefTels of forae 
confiderable burden, is allowed to take in half a loading of fuch 
commodities as are the produft of Spain, and moft in demand in 
the ports whither they are bound. In retuin for thefe they may 
"bring home to Corunna an equal quantity of American produftions. 
This may be confidered as the firil relaxations of thofe rigid law?, 



^•tiich confined the trade with the new world to a fingle port, and 
ihe firil: attempt to admit the reft of the kingdom to I'ome (liarc 
in it. 

It was foon followed by one more deciUve, In the year 1765 
Charles III. laid open the trade to the windward iflands, Cuba, Hifpa- 
niola, Porto-Rico, Margarita and Trinadad, to his fubjcifts in every 
province of Spain. He permitted them to fail from certain ports ia 
each province, which are fpecified in the edidl, at any feafon, and 
with whatever cargo they deemed moll proper, without any other 
Warrant than a fimple clearance from the culiom-houfe of the place 
whence they took their departure. He releafed them from the nu- 
merous and oppreffive dlities impofed on goods exported to Ame- 
rica, and in place of the whole fubiHtuted a moderate tax of fix in 
the hundred on the commodities fent from Spain. He allowed them 
to return either to the lame port, or to any other where they might 
hope for a more advantageous marker, and there to enter the home- 
ward cargo, on payment of the ufual duties. This ample privilege, 
which at once broke through all the fences v;hich the jealous policy 
of Spain had been labouring, for two centuries and a half, to throw 
round its commercial intercourfe with the new world, was foon after 
extended to LouiGana, and to the provinces of Yucatan and Cam- 

Still, however, the commercial regulations of Spain, with refpect 
to her colonies, are too rigid and fyilematical to be carried into 
complete execution. The legiflature that loads trade with impofitions 
too heavy, or fetters it by reftiiilions too fevere, defeats its own 
intention, and is only multiplying the inducements to violate its fta- 
tutes, and propofing an high premium to encourage illicit traffic. 
The Spaniards, both in Europe and America, being circumfcribed 
in their mutual intercourfe by the jealoufy of the crown, or opprefl'ed 
by its exaftions, have their invention continually on the ftretch how 
to elude its edifts. The vigilance and ingenuity of private intercft 
difcover means of effefting this, which public wildom cannot fore- 
fee, nor public authority prevent. This fplrit, connteracling that 
of the laws, pervades the commerce of Spain with America in all its 
branches, and from the higheft departments in government delcends 
to the loweft. The very officers appointed to check contraband trade 
are often employed as inftrument^. in carrying it on ; and the boards 
inftituted to reftrain and punifli it, are the channels through which it 
iiows. The king is fuppofed, by the moft intelligent Spanifli v.rlters. 

Vol. IV, D d to 


to be defrauded, by various artifices, of more than one-half of th'c 
revenue which he ought to receive from America ; and as long as it 
is the interell of fo many perfons to Ikreen thofe artifices from de- 
tedion, the knowledge of them will never reach the throne. 

Before we clofe this account of the Spanifh trade in America, there 
remains one detached, but important branch of it, to be mentioned. 
Soon after his acceffion to the throne, Philip II, formed a fcheme of 
planting a colony in the Philippine iflands, which had been neg- 
ledted fince the time of their difcoveiy ; and he accompliflied it by 
means of an armament fitted out from New-Spain. Manilla, in the 
ifland of Luconia, was the ftation chofen for the capital of this new 
eftablifliment. From it an active commercial intercourfe began with 
the Chinefe, and a confiderable number of that» induftrious peopk, 
allured by the profpeft of gain, fettled in the Philippine iflands under 
the Spanifh proteftion : they fuppiied the colony fo am[)ly with alL 
the valuable produdions and manufadures of the Eaft, as enabled 
it to open a trade with America, by a courfe of navigation the 
longefl: from land to land on our globe. In the infancy of this trade 
it was carried on with Callao, on the coaft of Peru ; but experience 
having difcovered the impropriety of fixing upon that as the port of 
commiHiication with Manilla, the ftaple of the commerce between 
the eaft and well: was removed from Callao to Acapulco, on the coaft 
of New-Spain. 

After various airangements, it has been brought into a regular 
form : one or two Ihips depart annually from Acapulco, which arc 
pf^mitted to carry out iilver to the amount of five hundred thoufand 
pefos, but they have hardly any thing elfc of value on board ; in re- 
turn for which, they bring back fpices, drugs, china and japan 
wares, calicoes, chintz, raullins, filks, and every precious article, 
with which the benignity of the climate, or the ingenuity of its 
people, has enabled the Eaft to fupply the reft of the world. For 
fome time the merchants of Peru were admitted to participate in 
this traffic, and might fend annually a flup to Acapulco to wait the 
arrival of the veflels from Manilla, and receive a pioportional fliare 
of the commodities which they imported. At length, the Peruvians 
were excluded from this trade by moft rigorous edifts, and all the 
commodities from the Eaft referved folely for the confuraption of 
New- Spain. 

In confequence of this indulgence, the inhabitants of that count.^y 
enjoy advantages unknown in the other Spanilli colonies. The ma- 



noifaftures of the Eaft are not only more fiiited to a warm climate, 
and more fliowy than thofe of Europe, but can be fold at a lower 
price ; while, at the fame time, the profits upon them are fo con- 
fiderable, as to enrich all thofe wlio are employed, either in bring- 
ing them from Manilla, or vending them in New-Spain. As the 
intereft both of the buyer and feller concurred in favouring this 
branch of commerce, it has continued to extend in fpite of regu- 
lations, concerted with the moft anxious jealoufy to clrcumfcribe it. 
Under cover of what the laws permit to be imported, great quanti- 
ties of Jndia goods are poured into the markets of New-Spain, and 
when the flota arrives at Vera Cruz from Europe, it often finds the 
wants of the people already fupplied by cheaper and more acceptable 

There is not, in the commercial arrangements of Spain^ any cir- 
cumftance more inexplicable than the permiffion of this trade be- 
tween New-Spain and the Philippines, or more repugnant to its 
fundamental maxim of holding the colonies in perpetual dependence 
on the mother country, by prohibiting any commercial intercourfe 
that might fuggeft to them the idea of receiving a fupply of their 
wants from any other quarter. This permiffion muft appear flill 
more extraordinary, from confidering that Spain herfclf carries on 
no direft trade with her fettlements in the Philijjpines, and grants a 
privilege to one of her American colonies, which flie denies to her 
fubjeds in Europe. It is probable, that the colonifts who originally 
took poffeffion of the Philippines, having been fent out from New- 
Spain, begun this intercourie with a ccnntry v\/hich they confidcred, 
in fome meafurc, as their parent flate, before the court of Madrid 
was aware of its confequences, or could eftablilli regulations in or- 
der to prevent it. Many remonftrances have been prtfented againfl: 
this trade, as detrimental to Spain, by diverting into another channel 
a large portion of that treafure which ought to flow into the king- 
dom, as tending to give rife to a fpirit of independence in the co- 
lonies, and to encourage innumerable frauds, agarnft which it is 
impoffible to guard in tranfadions fo far removed from the in- 
fpedion of government. But as it requires no flight effort of po- 
litical wifdom and vigour to abolifli any practice which numbers are 
jnterefled in fupporting, and to which time has added the findioa 
of its authority, the commerce between New-Spain and Manilla 
i'cems to be as confiderable as ever, and may be confidered as one 
chief caufe of the elegance and fplendor confpicuous in this part of 
the Spanifli dominions, 

D d a rOR. 

( 204 ) 




B R A S I L, 

A. HIS territory is fituated between the equator and 35'' fouth lati-= 
tude, and 60° weft longitude ; it is about one thoufand five hundred 
and fixty miles in length, and one thoufand in breadth ; but, mea- 
suring along the coaft, it is two thoufand miles long, and is bordered 
with mountains that open from time to time, and form good harbours 
where vefTels may lie in fafety. 

It is bounded by the mouth of the river Amazon and the Atlantic 
ocean on the north ; and by the fame ocean on the eaft ; on the 
fouth by the river Plata ; on the weft by morafles, lakes, torrents, 
rivers, and mountains, which feparate it from Amazonia and the 
Spanifli pofTellions. On the coaft are three fmall iflands, where fliips 
touch for provifions on their voyage to the South feas, viz. Fernando, 
St. Barbaro and St. Catherine's. 

It was accidentally difcovered by the Portuguefe in 1500. Ema- 
nuel, king of Portugal, had cquipjrsd a fquadron of thirteen fail, car- 
rying twelve hundred foldiers and failors deftined for the Eaft-Indies, 
inider the condu6t of Peter Alvarez Cabral. This admiral, quitting 
Lifbon on the 9th of March, i 500, ftruck out to fea to avoid the 
coaft of Guinea, and fteered his courfe fouthward, that he might 
the more eafily turn the cape of Good Hope. On the 34th of April 
he got figlit of the continent of South-America, which he judged 
to be a large ifland at fome diftance from the coaft of Africa. Coaft- 
ing along for fome time, he ventured to fend a boat on fl:iore, and, 
was aftoniflied to obferve the inhabitants entirely ditferent from the 



Africans in features, hair and complexion. It was found, however, 
3iiipra6ticable to fcize upon any of the Indians, who retired with 
great celerity to the mountains on the approach of the Portuguefe ; 
yet, as the failors had difcovered a good harbour, the admiral thought 
proper to come to an anchor, and called the bay Puerto Seguro. Next 
day he fent another boat on fliore, and had the good fortune to lay 
hold on two of the natives, whom he clothed and treated kindly, 
and then difmiffed, to make a proper report to their countrymen. 
The ftratagem had the defired efteft. The Indians, having heard 
the relation of the prifoners, immediately crowded to the fliore, 
finging, cl ncing, and founding horns of different kinds ; which in- 
duced Cabral to land, and take folemn poffeflioa in the name of his 
Portuguefe majefty. 

As foon as the court of Lifbon had ordered a furvcy to be takea 
of the harbours, bays, rivers and coafts, of Brafil, and was con- 
vinced that the country afforded neither gold nor filver, they held it 
in fuch contempt, that they fent thither none but condemned crimi- 
nals ;ind abandoned women. Two fliips were fent every year from 
Portugal, to carry the refufe of the kingdom to this new world, and 
to bring home parrots, and woods for the dyers and cabinet-maker?. 
Ginger was afterwards added, but fv)on after prohibited, left it fliould 
interfere with the fale of the fame article from India. 

In 1548, the Jews, many of whom had taken refuge in Portugal, 
beginning to be perfecuted by the inquifition, were ilripped of their 
pofTefhons, and baniflied to Brafil. Here, however, they were not 
entirely forfaken : many of them found kind relations and faithful 
friends ; others, who were known to be men of probity and under- 
ftanding, obtained money in advance from merchants of different 
nations, v/ith whom they had formerly had tranfa6tions. By the ai- 
fiflance of fome enterpriling men they were enabled to cultivate fu- 
gar-canes, which they firfl procured from the illand of Madeira, 
Sugar, which till then had been ufed only in medicine, became an 
article of luxury ; princes and great men were all eager to procure 
themfelves this new ipecies of indulgence. This circumftance proved 
favourable to Brafil, and enabled it to extend its fugar plantations- 
The court of Lifbon, notwithftanding its prejudices, began to bs. 
fenfible, that a colony might be beneficial to the mother country, 
without producing gold or filver ; and this fettlement, which had 
been wholly left to the capricious management of the colonifts, was 
aow thought to deferve fome kind of attention j and accordingly^ 



Thomas de Souza was fent thither, in 1549, to regulate and fuper- 
intend it. 

This able governor began by reducing thefe men, who had always 
lived in a ftate of anarchy, into proper fubordination, and bringing 
their fcattered plantations clofer together ; after which he applied 
himfelf to acquire fome information refpeding the natives, with 
ivhom he knew he muft be neceflarily engaged either in traffic or 
war. This it was no eafy matter to accoaip!iih. Brafil was full of 
fmall nations, fome of which inhabited the forefts, and others lived 
in the plains and along the rivers : ibme had fettled habitations, but 
the greater number of them led a roving life, and moft of them 
had no intercourfe with each other. It is not to be fuppofed, that 
iuch a people would be at all difpofed to fubmit to the yoke which 
the Portuguel'e wanted to put upon them. At fird: they only declined 
all intercourlis with thcfe ftrangers ; but finding themfelvcs purfued 
in order to be made flaves, and to be employed in the labours of 
the field, they took the refolution to murder and devour all the Eu- 
ropeans they could feize upon. The ' lends and relations of the 
lavages that were taken prifoners alfo ventured to make Sequent at- 
tempts to ref:ue them, and were fometimes fuccefsfu: ; fo '.hat the 
Fortuguefe were forced to attend to the double employmenis uf la-* 
bour and war. 

Souza, by building San Salvador, gave a center to the colony ; 
but the honour of fettling, extending, and making it really ufotui to. 
the mother country, was referved for the Jefuits who attended him. 
Thefe men, who for their arts of infin nation and addrefs have been 
equalled by none, difperfed themfelves among the Indians. When 
any of the millionaries were murdered, they were immediately re- 
placed by others ; and feeming to be infpired only with fentiments 
of peace and charity, the Indians, in procefs of time, grew not only 
familiar but pafuonately fond of them. As the miffionaries were 
too few in number to tranfaft all the bufinefs themfelves, they fre- 
quently deputed fome of the mofl: intelligent Indians in their itead. 
Theie men, having dillributed hatchets, knives and looking-glafTes, 
among the favages they met with, reprefented the Fortuguefe as a 
harmlels, humane, and good fort of people. 

The prosperity of the colony of Brafil, which was vifdjle to all 

Europe, excited the envy of the French, Spaniards and Dutch luc- 

ceffively : the latter, indeed, bid faired for the conqueft of the whole; 

their admiral Henry Louk arrived, in the beginning of the year 

5 »<^3°^ 


1C30, with forty-fix men of war, on the coaft of FcrnaiTibu'~ca, one 
of the largefi: and befl: fortified captainYliips of thefe parts. He re- 
duced it after feveral obflinate engagements, in which tie was aUvay.': 
vidorious. Tlie troops he left behind fubdued the cnptainfliips of 
Temaraca, Pareiba, and Rio Grande, in the years 1633, 1634, and 
1633. Thefe, as well as Fernambucca, fnrnidicd annually a large 
quantity of fugar, a great deal of wood for dying, and other commo- 
dities. The Hollanders were fo elated with the acquifition of this 
wealth, which liowed to Amfterdam inflead of Lifbon, that they de- 
termined to conquer all the Brafils, and entrufled Maurice of Naflau 
with the conduct of this enterprife. That general reached the place 
of his deitination in ihe beginning oFthe year 1637 ; he found the 
foldiers fo well difciplined, the commanders fuch experienced men, 
and fo much readinefs in all to engage, that he direcftly took the 
field. He was fucceffively oppofc-d by Albuquerque, Eanjola, Lewis 
Rocca de Borgia, and the Brahlian Cameron, the idol of his people, 
paffionately fond of the Portuguefc, brave, aftive, c\inning, and 
who wanted no qualification neceilary for a general, but to have 
learned the art of war under able commanders. Thefe feveral chiefs 
exerted their iitmoft efforts to defend the pofleiuons that were under 
their protection ; but their endeavours proved ineiFecluaJ. The 
Dutch feized upon the captainfliips of Siara, Seregippe, and the 
greater part of that of Bahia. Seven of the fifteen provinces which 
compoied the colony had already fiibmitted to them, and they flat- 
tered themfelves that one or two campaigns would make them mailers 
of the refl of their enemies polTeffions in tliat part of America, w hesi 
they were fuddenly checked by the revolution happening on the b.i- 
niflmient of Philip IV. and placing the duke of Braganza on the 
throne. After this, the Portuguefe recovering their fpiiits, fooa 
drove the Dutch out of Brafil, and liave continued mailers of it ever 

The country of Brafil is divided into the fo'lowing province?, or 
captainfliips, as they are called, viz. Paria, Maragnano, Siara, Rio 
Grande, Pareiba, Tamaiica, Fernambucca, Seregippe, Bahia, 
Porto Seguro, Efperito Santo, Rio de Janeiro, Angra, St. Vincent, 
and Del Rey. 

The harbours of Brafil are Panambuco, AH Saints, Rio Janeiro, 
the port of St. Vincent, the harbour of Gabriel, and the port of St. 
Salvador ; and with relped to rivers, there are a great number of 
noble flreams, which unite with the rivers Anruzon and Plata, befides 
others which fall into the AtL.niic cceun. 



The climate of Brafil has been defcribed by two eminent natura» 
lifts, Pifo and Margrave, who obfei-ved it with a philofophical accu- 
racy, to be temperate and mild, when compared with that of AiTica j 
they afcribe this chiefly to the refrefliing wind which blows continu- 
ally from the fea. The air is not only cool, but chilly tiirough the 
night, fo that the natives kindle a fire every evening in their huts. 
As the rivers in this country annually overflow their banks, and leave 
a fort of flime upon the lands, the foil here muft be in many places 
amazingly rich ; and this correfponds with the beft information upon 
the fubjeft. The vegetable produftions are Indian corn, fugar 
canes, tobaccoj indigo, hides, ipecacuana, balfam, Bralil wood, 
which is of a r:d colour, hard and dry, and is chiefly ufed in dying, 
but not the red of the beft kind. Here is alfo the yellow fuftic, of ufe 
in dying yellow, and a beautiful piece of fpeckled wood, made ufe of 
in cabinet v/ork. Here are five diiferent forts of palm trees, fome 
curious ebony, and a great variety of cotton trees. This country 
abounds in horned cattle, which are hunted for their hides only, 
twenty thoufand being fent annually into Europe. There is alfo a 
plenty of deers, hares, and other game. Amongft the wild beafts 
found here, are tigers, porcupines, janouveras, and a fierce animal, 
fomewhat like a greyhound ; monkeys, floths, and the topiraffou, a 
creature between a bull and an afs, but without horns, and entirely 
harmlefs, the flefli is very good, and has the flavour of beef. There 
is a numberlefs variety of fowl, wild and tame, in this country; among 
thefe are turkeys, fine white hens and ducks. The remarkable 
birds are the humming bird; the lankima, fometimes called the uni- 
corn bird, from its having a horn, two or three inches long, growing 
out of its forehead ; the guira, fiimous for often changing its colour, 
being firft black, then afii-coloured, next white, afterwards fcarlet, 
and laft of all crimfon ; which colours grow richer and deeper the 
longer the bird lives. Among the abundance of fifli with which the 
feas, lakes, and rivers of this country are flored, is the globe fifli, fo 
called from its form, which is fo befet with fpines like a hedgehog, it bids defiance to all filh of prey. But the moft remarkable 
creature is the lea bladder, fo called becaufe it greatly refembles one, 
and Ivvims on the furfacc of the waves ; the infide is filled with air, 
except a finall quantity of water, that ferves to poife it. The (kin is 
very thin and tranfparent, and like a bubble raifed in the water, re- 
fleds all the colours of the fky. Brafil breeds a great variety offer- 
pents and venomous creatures, among which are the Indian falaman- 



der, a four-legged infect, the fling of which is mortal ; the ibivaboca, 
a fpecies of ferpent, about feven yards long, and half a yard in cir- 
cumference, whofe poifon is inftantaneoufly fatal ; the rattle-fnake, 
which there attains an enormous fize ; the liboyd, or roe-buck fnake, 
\vhich authors inform us are capable of fwallowing a roe-buck whole 
with his horns, being between twenty and thirty feet in length, and 
two yards in circumference. Befides thofe, there are many other in- 
fers and ferpents of a dangerous and venomous nature. 

The gold and diamond mines are but a recent difcovery; they 
were firll opened in the year 168 1, and have fmce yielded above five 
millions flerling annually, of which fum a fifth belongs to the crown. 
So plentiful are diamonds in this country, that the court of Portugal 
has found it neceffary to reftrain their importation, to prevent too 
gi-eat a dimunition of their value. They are neither fo hard nor fo 
clear as thofe of the Eaft-Indies, nor do they fparkle fo much, but 
they are whiter. The Brafilian diamonds arc fold ten per cent, 
cheaper than the Oriental ones, fuppofing the weights to be equal. 
The largeft diamond in the world was fent from Brafil to the king of 
Portugal ; it weighs one thoufand fix hundred and eighty carats, or 
twelve ounces and a half, and has been valued at fifty-fix millions 
feven hundred and eighty feven thoufand five hundred pounds. Some 
fliilful lapidaries, however, are of opinion that this fuppcfed diamond 
is only a topaz, in which cafe a very great abatement muft be made in 
its value. The crown revenue arifing from this colony amounts to 
two millions fterling in gold, if we may credit fome late writers, be- 
fides the duties and cuftoms on merchandife imported from that 
quarter. This, indeed, is more than a fitth of the precious metal 
produced by the mines, but every other confequeftt advantage confi- 
dered, it probably does not much exceed the truth. 

The extraction of gold is neither very laborious nor danger- 
ous in Brafil. It is fometimes on the furface of the foil, and this is the 
pureft kind, and at other times it is neceiTary to dig for it eighteen or 
twenty feet, but feldom lower. It is found in larger pieces upon the 
mountains and barren rocks than in the valleys, or on the borders of 
the river. Every man who difcovers a mine, muft give notice of it 
to the government. Iftlie vein be thought of little confequence by 
perfons appointed to examine it, it is always given up to the public ; if 
it be declared to be a rich vein, the government referve a portion of 
it to themfelves ; anotlier fliare is given to the commandant, a third 
to the intendant, and two fliares are fecured to the difcoverer. The 

Vol. IV. Ee miner* 


•^miners are obliged to deliver to the king of Portugal a fifth part of all 

"the gold which is extrafted. 

*""iSt. Salvador is the capital of Bfafil. This city lias a noble, fpaci- 

'ons and commodious harbour, is built on a high and fteep rock, 
having the fea upon one fide, and a lake forming a crefcent on the 

'other. The ' fituation makes it in a manner impregnable by nature, 

'khd the I'ortuguefe have befides added to it very ftrong fortifications ; 
it is populous, magnificent, and beyond comparifon the moft gay and 
'opulent in all Brafil. 

The trade of Brafil is very great, and increafes every year. The 
Portugucfe have opportunities of fupplying themfelves with flaves for 
their feveral works, at a much cheaper rate than any other European 
power that has fettlements in Ahierica, they being the only European 
nation that has eftabliflied colonies in Africa, from whence they import 

" as'rriany as forty thoufand negroes annually. 

■ The fexce'fli've confluence of people to the Brafil colbnies, as well 

'from other countries as from Portugal, not only enlarges the imports 
of gold, diamonds, fugar, tobacco, hides, drugs and medicines, but 

"what is of infinitely more importance to Europe in general, theexpor- 

"tation of the manufadures of this hemifphere, of which the principal 
are the following : Great-Britain fends woollen manufadlures, fuck 

"as fine broad rriedley cloths, fine Spanifh cloths, fcarlet and black 
cloths, fergcs, duroys, druggets, fagathies, flialloons, camblets, and 
Norwich fluffs, black Colchefter bays, fays, and perpetuanas, called 
Tong ells, hats, 'ftockings, and gloves. Holland, Germany, and 
France, chiefly export fine hoUands, bone lace, and fine thread ; 
filk manufaftures, pepper, lead, block tin, and other articles, are 
alfo' fent from different countries. Defides the particulars already 
fpecified, England likewife trades with Portugal, for the ufe of the 
Brafils, in copper and brafs, wrought and unwrought pewter, and 
all kinds of hardware ; all which articles have fo enlarged the Portii- 
guefe trade, that inftead of twelve fliips ufually employed in the 
Brafil commerce, there are now never fewer than one hundred fail 
of large vefl"els conftantly going and returning to thofe colonies. Ta 
all this may be added, that Brafil receives from Madeira great quantity 
of wine, vinegar, and brandy ; and from the Azores, hquors to the 
artiount of twenty-five thoufand pounds per ann. Indeed, the commerce 
of Brafil alone is fuflicient to raife Portugal to a confiderable height of 
navalpower, as it maintains a conflant nurfery of feamen ; yet a 
certain ihfatiitltion' in the policy of the countiy has prevented that ef- 

'■'■ •- '■ 4 ' ■• feft 


fe£t even amidft all thefe extraordinary advantages. All the fliips in, 
this trade being under the direftion of the govtrnmenr, have their 
appointed feafons of going and returning, under convoy of a certain 
number of men of war ; nor can a fingle fliip clear out or go, except 
with the fleet, but by a fpecial licence from the king, which is feldom 
granted, though it is ealily determined that fuch reftriiftions can 
prove no way beneficial to the general commerce, though poffibly the 
crown revenue may be better guarded thereby. The fleets fail in the 
following order, and at the following flated periods : that to Rio de 
Janeiro fets fail 'in January; the fleet to Bahia, or the bay of All 
Saints, in February ; and the third fleet, to Fernambucca, in the 
month of March. 

The native Brafilians are about the fize of the Europeans, but 
not fo fliout. They are fubjecft to fewer difcempers, and are long 
lived. They wear no cloathing ; the women wear their hair ex- 
tremely long, the men cut their's fliort ; the women wear bracelets 
of bones of a beautiful white, the men necklaces of the fame ; the 
women paint their faces, and the men their bodies. The food of the 
Brafilians is very Ample ; they live upon fliell fifli by the lea fide, 
along the rivers by fifliing, and in the forelts by hunting; and when 
thefe fail, they live upon calfava and other roots. They are extremely 
fond of dancing and other amufements, and thefe amufements are 
not interrupted by the worfliip of a Supreme Being, for it is faid they 
know of none, nor is their tranquillity difturbed by the dread of a 
future ftate, of which they have no idea. They have, however, their 
magicians, who, by ftrange contortions, fo far work upon the credu- 
lity of the people, as to throw them into violent convulfions. If the 
impoftures of thefe magicians are deteded, they are immediately put 
to death, which ferves in forae meafure to check the fpirit of deceit. 
Every Brafilian takes as many wives as he choofes, and puts them 
away when he gets tired of them. When the women lie in, they 
keep their bed but a day or two ; then the mother, hanging the child 
to her neck in a cotton fcarf, returns to her ufual occupation, with- 
out any kind of inconvenience. Travellers are received with diftin- 
guiflied marks of civility by the native Brafilians : wherever they 
go they are furrounded with women, who wafli their feet, and wel- 
come them with the molt obliging expreflions. But it would be an 
unpardonable affront if they fliould leave the family where they were 
firit entertained, in hopes of better accommodation in another. 
Some of thefe virtues, however, were more applicable to thefe 

£ e 2 natives, 


natives, before they were corrupted by an intercourfe with the Euro- 

With refpeft to the religion of Brafil, though the king of Portugal, 
as grand mailer of the order of Chrift, is folely in pofleflion of the 
titles ; and though the produce of the crufade belongs entirely to him, 
yet in this extenfive country, fix biflioprics have been fucceflively 
founded, which acknowledge for their fuperior the archbilhop of 
Bohia, eftabliflied in the year 1552. The fortunate prelates, molt 
of them Europeans, who fill thefe honourable fees, live in a very 
commodious manner, upon the emoluments attached to the funftion 
of their miniftry, and upon a penfion of from fifty to one thoufand 
two hundred and fifty pounds per ann. granted to them by the go- 
vernment. Among the inferior clergy, none but the miffionaries 
who are fettled in the Indian villages are paid, but the others find 
fufficient relburces in the fuperftition of the people. Befides an 
annual tribute paid by every family to the clergyman, he is entitled 
to two Ihiilings for every birth, for every wedding, and every bu- 
rial. Though there is not abfolutely an inquifition in Brafil, yet the 
people of that country are not protefted from the outrages of that bar- 
barous and infernal inllitution. 

The government of Brafil is in the viceroy, who has two coun- 
cils, one for criminal, the other for civil atfairs, in both of which he 
prefides ; but there is no part of the world where the lawyers 
are more corrupt, or the chicanery of their profefiion more prac- 

Only half of the Captainfliips, into which this country is divided, 
belong to the crown, the reft being fiefs made over to fome of the 
nobility, in reward of their extraordinary fervices, who do little more 
than acknowledge the fovereignty of the king of Portugal. 


( ==»3 ) 





V^AYENNE is bounded north and caft, by the Atlantic ocean ; 
fouth, by the Amazonia ; and weft, by Guiana, or Surinam. It extends 
two hundred and forty miles along the coaft of Guiana, and nearly 
three hundred miles within land, lying between the equator and the 
5th degree of north latitude. 

The land along the coaft is low, and very fubjeft to inundations 
during the rainy feafons, from the multitude of rivers which rufli 
down from the mountains with great impetuofity. Here the atmof- 
phere is very hot, moift and unwholefome, efpecially where the 
woods are not cleared away ; but on the higher parts where the trees 
are cut down, and the ground laid out in plantations, the air is more 
healthy, and the heat great, mitigated by the fea breezes. The 
foil in many parts is very fertile, producing fugar, tobacco, Indian 
corn, fruits, and other neceflaries of life. 

The French have taken pofleffion of an ifland upon this coaft, called 
alfo Cayenne. This fettlement was begun in 1635. A report had 
prevailed for fome time before, that in the interior parts of Guiana, 
there was a country known by the name of del Dorado, which con- 
tained immenfe riches in gold and precious ftones, more than ever 
Cortes and Pizarro had found in Mexico and Peru, and this fable had 
fired the imagination of every nation in Europe. It is fuppofed that 
ihis was the countr y in qucft of which Sir Walter Raleigh went on his 



laft voyage ; and as the French were not behind their neighbours in 
their endeavours to find out fo defirablea country, fome attempts for 
this purpofe were likewife made by that nation much about the fame 
time, which at laft coming to nothing, the adventurers took up their 
relidence on the ifland of Cayenne. In 1643, fome merchants of 
Rouen united their Hock, with a defign to fupport the new colony, 
but committing their affairs to one Poncet de Bretigny, a man of a 
ferocious difpofition, he declared war both againfi: the coloniils and 
favages, in confequence of which he was foon maflacred. This ca- 
taftrophe entirely extinguifhed the ardour of thefe affociates ; and in 
165 1 a new company was eftabliflied. This promifed to be much more 
confiderable than the former ; and they fet out with fuch a capital as 
enabled them to coUeft feven or eight hundred colonifts in the city of 
Paris itfelf. Thefe embarked on the Seine in order to fail down to 
Havre de Grace, but unfortunately the Abbe de Marivault, a man of 
great virtue, and the principal promoter of the undertaking, was 
drowned as he was flepping into his boat. Another gentleman who 
was to have a6ted as general, was affalfinated on his paffage ; and 
twelve of the principal adventurers who had promifed to put the co- 
Txrny into a flouriftiing fituation, not only were the principal perpe- 
trators of this aft, but uniformly behaved in the fame atrocious 
manner. At laft they banged one of their own number, two died, 
three were banifhed to a defert ifland, and the reft abandoned them- 
felves to every kind of excels. The commandant of the citadel deferred 
to the Dutch with part of his garrifun. The favages, roufed by num- 
berlefs provocations, fell upon the remainder ; fo that the few who 
were left, thought themfelves happy in efcaping to the Leeward 
iflands in a boat and two canoes, abandoning the fort, ammunition, 
arm?, and merchandife, fifteen months after they had landed on the 

In 1663, a new company was formed, whofe capital amounted 
only to eight thoufand feven hundred and fifty pounds. By the afiif- 
tance of the miaiftry they expelled the Dutch, who had taken pof- 
feftion of the iftand, and fettled themfelves much more comiortab'y 
than their predeceftors. In 1667, the illand was taken by the Eng- 
lilh, and in 1676 by the Dutch, but afterwards reftored to the 
French, and fince that time has never been attacked. Soon alter, 
fome pirates, laden with the fpoils they had gathered in the South 
feas, came and fixed their relidence at Cayenne, refolving to employ 
the treafures thev had acquired in the cultivation of the lands. In 


1688, Ducafle, an able feaman, arrived with fomelhips from France, 
and propofed to them the plundering of Surinam. This propofal 
exciting their natural turn for plunder, the pirates betook themlelves 
to their old trade, and almoft all the reft followed their example. 
The expedition, however, proved unfortunate ; many of the af- 
fallants were killed, and all the reft taken prifoners and fent to the 
Caribbee iflands. This lofs the colony has never yet recovered. 

The ifland of Cayenne is about fixteen leagues in circumference, 
and is only parted from the continent by two rivers. By a particular 
formation, uncommon in iflands, the land is higheft near the water 
fide, and low in the middle. Hence the land is fo full of moraffes, that 
all communication between the different parts of it is impoilible, 
without taking a great circuit. There are fome fmall tracts of an ex- 
cellent foil to be found here and there ; but the generality is dry, 
fandy, and foon exhaufted. The only town in the colony is defended 
by a covert way, a large ditch, a very good mud rampart, and five 
baftions. In the middle of the town is a pretty confiderable emi« 
nence, of which a redoubt has been made that is called the fort. The 
entrance into the harbour is through a narrow channel, and fliipa 
can only get in at high water owing to the rocks and reefs that ave 
fcattered about this pafs. 

The firft produce of Cayenne was the arnotto, from the produce 
■<if which, the colonifts proceeded to that of cotton, indigo, and laftly, 
fugar. It was the firft of all the French colonies that attempted to 
cultivate cofiee. The coffee tree was brought from Surinam in ly^si, 
by fome deferters from Cayenne, who purchafed their pardon by fo 
doing. Ten or twelve years after they planted cocoa ; we have very 
little account of the produce with refpeft to quantity, but as far back 
as the year 1752, there were exported from Cayenne two hundred 
and fixty thoufand five hundred and forty-one pounds of arnotto, 
eighty thoufand three hundred and fixty-three pounds of fugar, kvcn- 
teen thoufand nine hundred and nineteen pounds of cotton, twenty- 
fix thoufand eight hundred and eighty-one pounds of coffee, ninety- 
pne thoufand nine hundred and fixteen pounds of cocoa, fix hundred 
and eighteen trees for timber, and one hundred and four planks. 


( 2l6 


so UTH-jlME RIG J, 


X HIS province, the only one belonging to the Dutch on the con- 
tinent of America, is fituated between 5° and 7° north latitude, 
having the mouth of the Oronoko and the Atlantic, on the north ; 
Cayenne, on the eaft j Amazonia, on the fouth j and Terra Firma 
on the w^cft. 

The Dutch claim the whole coaft from the mouth of Oronoko to 
the river Marowyne, on which are fituated their colonies of EflequibOj 
Demerara, Berbice, and Surinam. The latter begins with the 
river Saramacha, and ends with the Marowyne, including a length of 
coaft of one hundred and twenty miles. 

A number of fine rivers pafs through this country, the principal of 
which are Effequibo, Surinam, Demerara, Berbice, and Conya. 
Eflequibo is nine miles wide at its mouth, and is more than three 
hundred miles in length. Surinam is a beautiful river, three quar- 
ters of a mile wide, navigable for the largeft veflels four leagues, and 
for fmaller veflels fixty or feventy miles farther. Its banks, quite to 
the water's edge, are covered with evergreen mangrove trees, which 
render the pafl'age up this river very delightful. The Demerara is 
about three quarters of a mile wide where it empties into the Suri- 
©aro, is navigable for large veflels one hundred miles j a hundred 



miles farther are feveral falls of eafy afcent, above which it divides 
into the fouth-weft and fouth-eaft branches. 

The water of the lower parts in the river is brackifh, and unfit 
for ufe ; and the inhabitants are obliged to make ufe of rain v/ater, 
which is here uncon'.monly Iweet and good. It is caught in cifterns 
placed under ground, and before drinking, is fet in large earthea 
pots to fettle, by which means it becomes very clear and whole- 
fome. Thefe cifterns are fo large and numerous, that water is lel- 
dom fcarce. 

In the months of September, Oftober, and November, the cli- 
mate is unhealthy, particularly to ftrangers. The common dileafes 
are putrid and other fevers, the dry belly-ach, and the dropfy. One 
hundred miles back from the fea, the foil is quite different, a hilly 
country, a pure, dry, wholefome air, where a fire fometimes would 
not be difagreeable. Along the fea coaft the water is unwholefome, 
the air damp and fultry. The thermometer ranges from 75" to 90" 
through the year. A north-eaft breeze never fails to blow from about 
nine o'clock in the moi ning through the day, in the hotteft feafons. 
As the days and nights throughout the year are very nearly of an 
equal length, the air can never becortie extiemely heated, nor the 
inhabitants fo greatly incommoded by the heat, as thofe who live at a 
greater diftance from the equator. The feafons were formerly di- 
vided regularly into rainy and dry; but of late years fo much depen- 
dence cannot be placed upon them, owing probably to the country's 
being more cleared, by which means a free paflage is opened for the 
air and vapours. 

Through the whole country runs a ridge of oyfter fhells^ nearly 
parallel to the coaft, but three or four leagues from it, of a confide- 
rable breadth, and from four to eight feet deep, compofed of fliella 
exaftly of the fame nature as thofe which form the prefent coaft: 
from this and other circumftances, there is great reafon to believe that 
the land, from that diflance from the fea, is all new land, refciied 
from the water by fome revolution in nature, or other unknown 

On each fide of the rivers and creeks are fituated the plantations, 
containing from five hundred to two thoufand acres each, in number 
about five hundred and fifty in the whole colony, producing at pre- 
fent annually about fixteen thoufand hogflieads of fugar, twelve mil- 
lion pounds of cotfee, feven hundred thoufand pounds of cocoa, eight 
hundred and fifty thoufand pounds of cotton : all which articles. 

Vol. IV. F f cottoa 


cotton excepted, have fallen off within fifteen years, at leaft one thir^i 
owing to bad management, both here and in Holland, and to other 
caufed. Of the proprietors of thefe plantations, not above eighty 
refide here. The fugar plantations have tiiany of them water mills, 
■^vhich being much more profitable than others, and the fituation of 
the colony admitting of them, will probably become general ; of the 
relT:, fome are worked by mules, others by cattle, but from the low- 
tiefs of the country none by thev/ind. The eftates are for the greateft 
part mortgaged for as much or more than they are worth, which 
grearlydilcourages any improvements v/hich might otherwifc be made. 
W as it not for the unfortunate fituation of the colony in this and other 
refpefts, it is certainly capable ol^ being brought to a great height of 
improvc-ment ; dyes, gums, oils, plants for medicinal purpofes, 
&c. might, ■ and undoubtedly will, at fome future period, be found 
in abundance. Rum might be diftilled here ; indigo, ginger, rice 
and tobacco, have been, and may be f;M-:r.£r cultiv^'red, and many 
other articles. In the woods are found many kinds of good and du- 
rable timber, and fome woods for ornamental purpofes, particularly 
a kind of nnhogany called copic. The foil is perhaps as rich and 
as luxuriant as any in the world ; it is generally a rich, fat, loamy 
earth, lying in Ibme places above the level of the rivers at high 
water, which rife about eight feet, but in moft places below it. 
Whenever, from a continued courfe of cultivation for many years, a 
piece of land becomes iinpoverifaed, for manure is not known here^ 
it is laid under water for a certain number of years, and thereby re- 
gains its fertility, and in the mean time a new piece of wood land ia 
cleared. Thisiftanrry has never experienced thofc dreadful icourges 
of the Wefl-. Indies, hurricanes; and droughts from the lownefs of 
the land it has not to fear, nor has the produce ever been deflroyed 
by iniecls or by the blaft. In fliort, this colony, by proper manage- 
ment, might become equal to Jamaica, or any other. Land is not 
wanting ; it is finely interfeded by noble rivers, and abundant 
creeks ; the foil iS of the beft kind ; it is well fituatcd, and ilie cli- 
mate is not very unheaUi\y : it is certainly growing better, and will 
continue fj to do, the more the country is cleared of its woods, and 

The rivers abound with fifli, fome of which are good ; at certain 
fi-afons of the year there is plenty of turtle. The woods abound with 
plenty ol" deer, hares, and rabbits, a kind of buffaloe, and two fpecies 



of wild hog?, one of winch, the peccary, is renurkable for having 
its navel on the back. 

The woods are infefted with fevera! fpecies of tigers, but with 
no other ravenous or dangerous animiils. The rivers arc rendered 
dangerous by alligators, from fMir to feven Uti long, and a man was 
a fliort time fince cruflied between fhe jaws of a lidi, but its name i» 
not known. Scorpions and tirantulas are foi^nd here of a large fize 
and great venom, and other infedV- without number, fome of them 
very dangerous and trouhiefome. The torporific etl, the touch of 
which, by means of the hare hand or any conductor, has the cffeft 
of a ftrong elci^lrical fliock. Serpents alfo, fome of which arc \e- 
nomous, and others, as has been aflcrted by many credible perfon?, 
are from twenty-five to fifty feet long. In the woods are monkeys, 
the (loth, and parrots in all their varieties ; alfo fome birds of beau- 
tiful plumage, among others the flamingo, but few or no Ringing 

Paramaribo, fltuated on Surinam river, four leagues from the fea, 
north latitude 6", weft longitude -5° ficm Greenwich, is the prin- 
cipal town in Surinam. It contains about two thoufand whites, 
pne half of whom are Jews, and eight thoufand {laves. The houfes 
are principally of wood, fome few have glafs windows, but generally 
they have wooden fliutters. The ftreets are fpaclous and ftraight, 
and planted on each fide with orange or tamarind trees. 

About feventy miles from the fea, on the fame river, is a village 
of about forty or fifty houfes, inhabited by Jews. This village, and 
the town above mentioned, v/ith the intervening plantations, contain 
all the inhabitants in this colony, \»-hich amouuL to three thouland 
two hundred whites, and forty-three thoufand flaves. The buildings 
on the plantations are many of them cofliy, convenient, and airy. 
The country around is thinly inhabited with the native bidians, a 
harmlefs friendly race of beings. They are, in general, fiiort of 
ftature, but remarkably well made, of a light copper colour, ftraighc 
black hair, without beards, high check bones, and broad Ihoulders. 
In their ears, nofes, and hair the women wear ornaments ot filver, 
&c. Both men and women go naked. One nation or tribe of them 
tie the lower part of the legs of the female children, v.dien young, 
\vith a cord bound very tight for the breadth of fix inches about the 
uncle, which cord is never afterwai*ds taken off but to pr.t on a new 
!, by which means the flcfli, which fliould otherwife grow on that 
•iart of the leg, increafes the calf to a great fize, and leaves the bone 

F f 2 lt>elow 


below nearly bare. This, though it muft render them very weak, 
is reckoned a great beauty by them. The language of the Indiana 
apjeprs to be very foft. They are mortal enemies to every kind of 
lahoui, but neverthelefs manufadure a few articles, fuch as very 
fine cotton hammocks, earthen water pots, balkets, a red or yellow 
dye called roucau, and fome other trifles, all which they exchange 
for fuch articles as they ftand in need of. 

They paint themfclves red, and fome are curioufly figured with 
black. Their foodconfiils chiefly of fifh and crabs ; and caflava, of 
which they plant great quantities, and this is almofl: the only pro- 
duce they attend to. They cannot be iaid to be abfolutely wander- 
ing tribes, but their huts being merely a few crofs fticks covered with 
branches, fo as to defend them from the rain and fun, they frequently 
quit their habitations, if they fee occafion, and eftablifli them elfe- 
where. They do not fliun the whites, and have been ferviceable 
againft the runaway negroes. 

Dr. Bancroft obfcrves, that the inhabitants of Dutch Guiana 
are either whites, blacks, or the redslifli brown aboriginal na- 
tives. The promifcuous intcrcourfe of thcfe different people have 
generated fcveral intermediate calls, v,'-hofe colours depend on 
their degree of confanguinity to either whites, blacks, negroes, or 

The river Surinam is guarded by a fort and two redoubts at the 
entrance, and a fort at Paramaribo, but none of them of any 
flrengtli, fo that one or two frigates would be fufhcient to make 
thcmfelves mafters of the whole colony, and never was there a people 
who more ardently wiflied for a change of government than the in- 
habitants of this colony do at this time. The many grievances they 
labour under, and the rMMENSE EURxubN of taxes, which 
threaten the ruin of the colony, make them excufable in their ge- 
neral defire to change the Dutch for a French government. This 
is precif'ly the cafe in Europe, the taxes are fo enormous, and 
the opprelTion of the StaLhold;:,"ian government fo great, that wc 
may venture to afTert, that no huinan i>o\vev (ami ive ca?inot think a 
Divine one will interfere) can pofTibly prevent much longer a revo- 
hition from taking place. 

The colony is not immediately under the States General, 
but under a company in Holland, called the Dire6lors of Surinam, 
Ti. co\x\\,zn\ firjl formed hy the States General, but now fupplying its 
own vacancies ; by them are appointed the governor and all the 



principal officers both civil and militar}'. The interior govern- 
ment confilh of a governor, and a fupreme and inferior coua- 
cil ; the members of the latter are chofen by the governor from 
a double nomination of the principal inhabitants, and thole of the 
former in the fame manner. By thefe powers, and by a magiftrata 
prefiding over all criminal affairs, juftice is executed, and lawb are 
enabled neceffary for the interior government of the colony ; clicfe of 
a more general and public nature are enafted by tlie diredtorb, and 
require no approbation by the court. 

The colony is guarded by about one thoufand fix hundred re- 
gular troops, paid by the direftors. Thefe troops, together u ith i 
corps of about two hundred aud fifty free negroes, paid by t. ^ 
Dutch government, and another fmall corps of challpnr.s, an'' as 
many flaves as the court thinks fit to order from the platitcrs, from 
time to time, are difperfcd at polls placed at proper dillances on 
a cordon, furrounding the colony on the land fide, in order, as 
far as poffible, to defend the diftant plantations and the colony in 
general, from the attacks of fevcral dangerous bands of runaway 
ilaves, which from very fmall beginnings have, from the natural pro- 
lificacy of the negro race, and the continual addition of frefli fugi- 
tives, arrived at fuch a height as to have coil the country very great 
Turns of money, and much loi's of men, without being able to do thefe 
negroes any effeftual injur}'. 

This colony was firft pofleffed by the French as early as the year 
1630 or 40, and was abandoned by them on account of its unhealthy 
climate. In the year 1650 it was taken by fome Engliflimen, and in 
1662 a charter grant was made of it by Charles II. About this time 
it was confiderably augmented by the fettlement of a number of 
Jews, who had been driven out of Cayenne and the Brafils, whofe 
defcendants, with other Jews, compofe at ptefent one half of the 
white inhabitants of the colony, and are allowed great privileges. la 
1667 it was taken by the Dutch, and the Englifli having got pofl^ef- 
fion about the fame time of the then Dutch colony of New-York, 
each party retained its conquell ; the Englifli planters moll of them 
retired to Jamaica, leaving their flaves behind them, whofe language 
is ftill Englifli, butfo corrupted as not to be underltood at firfl by aa 


( 232 ) 





_MAZONIA is fituated between the equator and 20° fouth lati- 
tude ; its length is one thoufand four hundred miles, and irs breadth 
rine hundred miles : it is bounded on the north by Terra Firnia and 
Guiana ; on the eaft by Brafil j on the fouth by Paraguay ; and on 
the weft by Peru. 

The air is cooler in this country than could be expefted, confider- 
tng it is fituated in the torrid zone. This is partly owing to the heavy 
r.sins which occafion the rivers to overflow their banks one-half of 
the year, and partly to the cloudinefs of the weather, which ob- 
Kures the fun great part of the tirwe he is above the horizon. During 
the rainy feafon the country is fubject to dreadful florms of thunder 
and lightning. 

The foil is extremely fertile, producing cocoa nuts, pine apples, 
bananas, plantains^ and a great variety of tropical fruits ; cedar, red- 
wood, pak, ebony, logwood, and many other forts of dying wood ; 
together with tobacco, fiigar canes, cotton,^ potatoes, balfam, honey, 
&c. The woods abound with tigers, wild boars, buffaloes, deer, 
and game of various kinds. The rivers and lakes abound with fifli. 
Here are alfo fea-cows and turtles ; but the crocodiles and water 
ferpents render fiiliing a dangerous employment. 

The river Amazon is the largeft in the known world. This river, 
fo famous for the length of its courfc, this great vaflal of the fea, to 
which it brings the tribute it has received from fo many of its own 
tributaries, feems to be produced by innumerable torrents, which 
rufh down with amazing impetuofity from the eaftern declivity of 



the Andes, and unite in a fpacious plain to form this iinitienfe river. 
In its progrefs of three tboufand three hundred miles it receives the 
waters of a prodigious number of rivers, fome of which come from 
fai-, and are very broad and deep. It is interfperfed with an infinite 
numher of iilands, which are too often overllowed to admit of cul- 
ture : it falls into the Atlantic ocean under the ecjuator, and is there 
one hundred and fifty rniles broad. 

The natives of this country, like all the other Anriericans, are of 
a good flature, have handfome features, long black hair, and cop- 
per complexionb. They are f^^.id to have a tafte for the imitative arts, 
efpecially painting and fculpture, and make good mechanics. Their 
cordage is made of the barks of trees, and their fails of cotton^ 
their hatchets of tortoife {hells or hard flones, their chiiels, plains and 
wimbles, cf the horns and teeth of wild beafts, and their canoes are 
trees hollowed. They fpin and weave cotton cloth, build their houfes 
with wood a:id clay, and thitch them with reeds. Their arms in 
general are darts and javelins, bows and arrow?, with targets of canfi 
or fifli fkins. The feveral nations are governed by their chiefs or 
caziques ; it bting obfervable, that the monarchical form of go- 
vernment has prevailed alniofl: ilniverfally, both among ancient and 
modern barlarians; doubtlefs on account of its fuperior advantages 
'with refpcft to v/ar and rapine, and as requiring a much lefs refined' 
policy than the republican fyftem, and therefore hell adapted for the 
favage flatc. The regalia, v.'hich diftinguifii the chiefs, are ii 
crown of parrots feathers, a chain of tigers teeth or claws, which 
hangs round the waift, a. id a wooden fword, which, according to 
Ibme authors, wei"e intended for hieroglyphics. 

As early as the time of Hercules and Thcfeus, the Greeks had 
imagined the exlftence of a nation of Amazons ; with this fable they 
embelliflied the hiitory of all their heroes, not excepting that of 
AhNander; and the Spaniards, infatuated with this dream of anti- 
quity, transferred it to Atr.erica. They reported, that a republic 
ol iemale u'arrioi's actually exited in America, who did not live in 
lociety with men, and only admitted them once a year for the pur- 
pofes of procie.uion. To give the more credit to this romantic 
ftory, it was reported, not without reafon, that the v.-omen in Ame- 
rica were ail fo unhajjpy, and v;ere treated with fuch contempt and 
inhumanity by the men, that many of them had agreed to fhake off 
the yoke of their tyrants. It was farther faid, that being accuftomed 
to follow the m;n into the forefts, and to carry their provifions and 
a bjggage 


baggage when they went out to fight or to hunt, they mufl necef- 
farily have been inured to hardiliips, and rendered capable of form- 
ing fo bold a refolution. Since this ftory has been propagated, in- 
finite pains have been taken to find out the truth of it, but no traces 
could ever be difcovered. 

The mind of a good man is pleafed with the reflexion, that any 
part of South-America has efcaped the ravages of European tyrants. 
This country has hitherto remained unfubdued ; the original inha- 
bitants, therefore, enjoy their native freedom and independence, the 
birthright of every human being. 


( 225 ) 



ATAGONIA IS fituated between 35"^ and 54"^ fouth latitude ; 
its length is eleven hundred miles, and its breadth three hundred and 
fifty : it is bounded north by Chili and Paragua ; ealt by the Atlantic 
ocean; fouth by the ftraits of Magellan; welt by the Pacific ocean. 

The climate is faid to be much colder in this country than in the 
north under the fame parallels of latitude, which is imputed to the 
Andes, which pais through it, being covered with eternal fnow : ic 
is almoft impoflible to fay what the foil would produce, as it is not 
at all cultivated by the natives. The northern parts are covered 
with wood, among which is an inexhauftible fund of large timber ; 
but towards the fouth, it is faid, there is not a fingle tree larg© 
enough to be of ufe to mechanics. There are, however, good 
paftures, which feed incredible numbers of horned cattle and horfes, 
firft carried there by the Spaniards, and now increafed in an amazing 

It is inhabited by a variety of Indian tribes, among which are the 
Patagons, from whom the country takes its names, the Pampas and 
the Coflbres : they all live upon fifli and game, and what the earth 
produces fpontaneoufly : their huts are thatched, and, notwithftand- 
ing the rigour of the climate, they wear no other clothes than a 
mantle made of feal flcin, or the fkin of fome beaft, and that they 
throw off when they are in aftion : they are exceedingly hardy, 
brave and a£live, making ufe of their arms^ which are bows and 
arrows headed with flints, with amazing dexterity. 

Magellan, who firft difcovered the ftraits which bear his name, 
and after him Commodore Byron, have reported, that there exifts, 
in thefe regions, a race of giants ; but others, who have failed this 
way, contradict the report. Upon the whole we may conclude, that 
this ftory is, perhaps, like that of the female republic of Amazons. 

The Spaniards once built a fort upon the ftraits, and left a gar- 
rifon in it to prevent any other European nation paffing that way into 
the Pacific ocean; but moft of the men periflied by hunger, whence 

Vol. IV. G g the 


the place obtained the name of port Famine, and lince that fatal 
event, no nation has attempted to plant colonies in Patagonia. As 
to the religion or government of thefe favages, we have no certain 
information : fome have reported, that thefe people believe in invili- 
ble powers, both good and evil ; and that they pay a tribute of 
gratitude to the one, and deprecate the wrath and vengeance of the 


We have now traverfed the fevei-al pravinces of that extenlive re- 
gion, which is comprehended between the ifthmus of Darien and tlie 
fifty-fourth degree of fouth latitude. We have taken a curfory vicNt 
of the rivers, the foil, the cHmate, the produftions, the commerce, 
the inhabitants, &c. 

The hiftory of Columbus, together with his bold and adventurous 
aftions in the difcovery of this country, we have but (lightly noticed 
in this account, as we had done this in a preceding part of this work.* 
His elevated mind fuggefted to hina ideas fnperior to any other man 
of his age, and his afpinng genius prompted him to make greater and 
more noble efforts for new difcoveries : he crofled the extenfive At- 
lantic, and brought to view a u'Oikl unheard of by the people of the 
ancient hemifphere. This excited an enterpriling, avaricious, fpirit 
among the inhabitants of Europe ; and they flocked to America for the 
purpofes of plunder. In coafequence of which, a fcene of barbarity 
has been a^led, of which South-America has been the prineipal theatre, 
which fiiocks the human mind, and almofl: ftaggers belief. No fooner 
had the Spaniards fet foot upon the American continent, than they 
laid claim to the foil, to the mines, and to the fervices of the natives, 
tv'herever they came. Countries were invaded, kingdoms were over- 
turned, innocence was attacked, and happinefs had no afylum. Def- 
potifm and cruelty, with all their terrible fcourgcs, attended their 
advances in every part : they went forth, they conquered, they ra- 
vaged, they deftroyed : no deceit, no cruelty, was too great to be 
made ufc of to latisfy their avnrice : juflice was difregarded, and 
mercy formed no part of the charadler of thefe inhuman conquerors : 
they were intent only on the profecution of fchemes moil degrading 
and moft fcandalous to the human charafter. In Sotith- America, 
the kingdoms of Terra Firma, of Peru, of Chili, of Parage.:?, of 
Brafil, and of Guiana, fucceflively lell a facrilice to their ■■ i„;ous 

* See iFol. i. page i, 



ambition and avarice. The hiftory of their feveral reduftions was 
too copious to be infeited at large in a work of this kind ; but wc 
have endeavoiired to afford the reader a brief view of thofe tranfaftions 
which have blafted the charafter of all thofe who had any thing to do 
with the conquefl of this paft of the globe. Let us then turn from 
thefe diftrelTing fcenes ; lee us leave the political world, where no- 
thing but fpeftaclcs of horror are prefented to our view ; where 
fcenes of blood and carnage diftraft the imagination ; where the 
avarice, injuftice and inhumanity of men, furnifli nothing but 
uneafy fenfations ; let us leave thefe, and enter the natural world, 
whofe laws are conftant and uniform, and where beautiful, grand 
and fublmie objefts continually prefent themfelves to our view. 

We have given a defcription of thofe beautiful and fpacious rivers 
which every where interfedt this country; and of that immenfe chaia 
of mountains, which runs from one end of the continent to the other. 
Thefe enormous maffes, which rife to fuch prodigious heights above 
the humble furface of the earth, where almofl all mankind have 
fixed their relidence ; thefe maffes, which in one part are crowned 
with impenetrable and ancient forefts, that have never refounded 
with the ftroke of the hatchet, and in another, raife their towerrng 
tops, and arreft the clouds in their courfe, while in other parts they 
keep the traveller at a diflance from their fummits, either by ram- 
parts of ice that furround them, or from vollies of flame iffuing forth 
from the frightful and yawning caverns ; thefe maffes giving rife 
to impetuous torrents defeending with dreadful noife from their opea 
fides, to rivers, fountains and boiling fprings, fill every beholder 
with aftonifliment. 

The height of the moft elevated point in the Pyrenees is, accords 
ing to Mr. Coilini, fix thoufand fix hundred and forty-fix feet. Th« 
height of the mountain Gemmi, in the canton of Berne, is ten 
thoufand one hundred and ten feet. The height of the peak of 
Teneriffe, is thirteen thoufand one hundred and feventy-eight feet. 
The height of the Chimborazo, the molt elevated point of the An- 
des, is twenty thoufand tv.o hundred and eighty feet. Thus, upon 
comparifon, the highelt part of the Andes is feven thoufand one 
hundred and two feet higher than the peak of Teneriffe, the moft 
elevated mountain known in the ancient hemifphere. 

C g » HiSTORX 

( 228 ) 





X HE vaft continent of America is divided into two parts, North 
and South, the narrow ifthmus of Darien ferving as a link to con- 
reft thern together; between the Florida fliore on the northern 
peninfula, and the gulf of Maracabo on the fouthern, lie a multitude 
of iflands, which are called the Weft-Indies, from the name of India, 
originally affigned to them by Columbus ; though, in confequence 
pf the opinions of fome geographers of the fifteenth century, they 
are frequently known by the appellation of Antilia or Antilles : this 
term is, however, mor^ often applied to the windward or Caribbean 

. Subordinate to this comprehenfive and fimple arrangement, ne- 
cefiity or convenience has introduced more local diftiniSioiis : that 
portion of the Atlantic which is feparated from the main ocean to the 
north and eafl by the iflands, though known by the genei"al appella- 
tion of the Mexican gulf, is itfelf properly divided into three diftinft 
parts ; the gulf of Mexico, the bay of Honduras, and the Carib- 
bean fea, fo called from that clafs of iflands which bound this part 
of the ocean on the eaft. Of this clafs, a group nearly adjoining 
to the eaftern fide of St. John de Porto Rico is likewife called the 
Virgin' ifles.* The name of Bahama iflands is likewife given, or 

"* It may be proper to obfctye, that the old Spanifh navigators, in fpeaking of the 
Weft-India iflandt, frequently diftinguilh them into two clafles, by the terms Barlo- 
•pento and HaU.vmio, from whence our Windward and Leeward iflands, the Caribbean 
conftituting, in firi<^ propriety, the former clafs, and the iflands of Cuba, Jamaica, 
Hifpaniola and Porto-Rico the latter ; but the Englifh mariners appropriate both 
terms to the Caribbean iflands only, fubdividing them according to their fituation in 
the co^rfe of trade ; the Windward iflands, by their arrangement, terminating, I be- 
Jieve, with Martin ico, and the Leeward commencing at Dominica and extending to 
P^rtO-RiCQ. Edwatdi'' Ihjf. Vqi. I. f. 5. 


( %2S ) 




X HE vaft continent of America is divided into two parts, North 
and South, the narrow ifthitius of Darien ferving as a link to con- 
pe£l them together ; between the Florida fliore on the northern 
peninfula, and the gulf of Maracabo on the fouthern, lie a multitude 
of iflands, which are called the Weft-Indies, from the name of India, 
originally affigned to them by Columbus ; though, in confequence 
pf the opinions of foine geographers of the fifteenth century, they 
are frequently known by the appellation of Antilia or Antilles : this 
term is, however, more often applied to the windward or Caribbean 
iflands.. ^ 

Subordinate to this comprehenfive and fimple arrangement, ne- 
ceflity or convenience has introduced more local diftin6lions : that 
portion of the Atlantic which is feparated from the main ocean to the 
north and eafl by the iflands, though known by the general appella- 
tion of the Mexican gulf, is itfelf properly divided into three diftin(ft 
parts ; the gulf of Mexico, the bay of Honduras, and the Carib- 
bean fea, fo called from that clafs of iflands which bound this part 
of the ocean on the eaft. Of this clafs, a group nearly adjoining 
to the eaftern fide of St. John de Porto Rico is likewife called the 
Virgin ifles.* The name of Bahama iflands is likewife given, or 

"*' It ^;.^y be proper to obfetye, that the old Spanilh navigators, in fpeaking of the 
Weft-India iflands, frequently diflinguiAi them into two claffcs, by the terms Barlo^ 
yento and S.ou.vfnto, from whence our Windward and Leeward iflands, the Caribbean 
conOitutiiig, in flri<5l propriety, the former clafs, and the iflands of Cuba, Jamaica, 
Hifpaiiiola and Porto-Rico the latter ; but th? Englilh mariners appropriate both 
terms to the Caribbean iflands only, fubdividing them according to their fituation in 
the co^rfe of trade ; the Windward iflands, by their arrangement, terminating, I be-r 
iieve, with Martinico, and the Leeward commencing at Dominica and extendirig to 
^qrto-Rico. JEdw.irJi' lHjl. VqL I. f. 5. 



applied, by the Englifli, to a duller of fmall iflands, rocks and reefi 
of fand, which ftretch in a north-wefterly direftion for the fpace of 
nearly three hundred leagues from the northern coaft of Hifpaniola 
to the Bahama ftrait oppofite the Florida fliore.* 

Such of the above iflands as are worth cultivation now belong ta 
Great-Britain, Spain, France, Holland and Denmark. 

The British claim 

Jamaica, Nevis, 

Barbadoes, Montferrat, 

St. Chriftopher's, Barbuda, 

Antigua, Anguilla, 

Grenada, and the Grenadines, Bermudas, 

Dominica, The Bahama iflands. 

St. Vincent, 

The Spaniards claim 

Cuba, Trinidad, 

Part of St. Domingo, or Hif- Margaretta, 
paniola, Porto-Rico. 

The French claim 

Part of St. Domingo, St. Bartholomew, Defeada, 

Martiuico, Marigalante; 

Guadaloupe, Tobago. 

St. Lucia, 

The Dutch claim 

St. Euftatia, Curaflbu, or Curacoa, 


The Danes claim 

The iflands of St. Croix, St. Thomas and St. John's. 

The climate in all the Weft-India iflands is nearly the fame, al- 
lowing for thofe accidental differences which the feveral lituationa 
and qualities ot the lands themfelves produce. As they lie within 
the tropics, and the fun goes quite over their heads, paffing beyond 
them to the north, and never returning farther from any of them 
than about thirty degrees to the • fouth, they would be continually 

^i^ The whole group is called by the Spaniards Lucayos. 



fttbje<Sed to an extreme and intolerable heat, if the trade wind*, 
riiing gradually as the fun gathers ftrength, did not blow in upon 
them from the fea, and refrefli the air in fuch a manner, as to enable 
them to attend their concerns even under the meridian fun. On, 
the other hand, as the night advances, a breeze begins to be per- 
ceived, which blows fmartly from the land, as it were from the cen- 
ter, towards the fea, to all points of the compafs at once. 

By the fame remarkable Providence in the difpofmg of things it 
is, that when the fun has made a great progrefs towards the tropic 
of Cancer, and becomes in a manner vertical, he draws after him 
iiich a vaft body of clouds, which fhield them from his dire6t beams, 
and diflblving into rain, cool the air and refrefli the country, thirfty 
with the long drought, which commonly prevails from the beginning 
of January to the latter end of May. 

The rains in the Weil-Indies are like floods of water poured 
from the clouds with a prodigious impetuolity ; the rivers fuddenly 
Fife ; new rivers and lakes are formed, and in a fliort time all the 
iovv country is under water.* Hence it is, that the rivers which 
have their fource within the tropics, fvvell and overflow their banks 
at a certain feafon ; but fo mitlaken were the ancients in their idea 
of the torrid zone, that they imagined' it to be dried and fcorched 
up with a continual and fervent heat, and to be for that reafon un- 
inhabitable ; when, in reality, fome of the largeft rivers of the world 
have their courfe within its limits, and the raoillure is one of the 
greatcft inconveniencies of the climate in feveral places. 

The rains make the only diftinftion of feafons in the Wefl:-Indies ; 
the trees are green the whole year round ; they have no cold, no 
fro its, no fnows, and but rarely ibme hail ; the ftorms of hail are, 
however, very violent u'henthey happen, ami the hailftones very great 
and heavy. Whether it be owing to this moifture, which alone does 
jQot feem to be a fufticient caufe, or to a greater quantity of a ful- 
phureous acid, which predominates in the air of this countiy, metals 
of all kinds that are fubject to the action of fuch caufes rufl: and 
cankcf in a very fliort time ; and this caufe, perhaps, as much as 
the heat itfclf, contributes to make the climate of the Weft-Indies 
(finfricndly and unpleafant to an European conflitution. 

it is in 'the ra.iny feafon, principally in the month of Auguft, mora 
rarely in July and September, that they are aflTaulted by hurricanes, 

* Vt'arcv's Journ»y acrofs the Whmus of D.-»iiert. 



Ae moft terrible calamity to which they are fubje^ft, as well as the 
people in the E;:ft-Indies, from the climate ; this deftroys, at a ftrokc, 
the labours of many years, and proftrates the moft exalted hopes of 
the planter, and at the moment wlaen he thinks himfelf out of dan- 
gef. It is a fudden and violent ftorm of wind, rain, thunder and 
lightning, attended with a furious fwelling of the feas, and fometimes 
tvith an earthquake; in fliort, with every circumftance which th« 
elements can affemble that is terrible and deftruftiN'e. Fir A, they 
fee a prelude to the enfuing havoc, whole fields of fugar-canes 
whirled into the air, and fcattered over the face of the country. 
The ftrongeft trees of the foreft are torn up by the roots, and driven 
about like ftubbie ; their windmills are fwept away in a moment ; 
their utenfil?, the fixtures, the ponderous copper boilers, and^ftills 
of feveral hundred weight, are wrenched from the ground and 
teVed to pieces ; their hoiifcs are no protei^iou ; the roofs arc torn 
off at one blail ; whilft the rain, which in an hourraifes the water 
five feet, ruflies in upon them with an irrefiftible violence. 

The grand ftaple commodity of the Weft-Indies is fugnr ; this 
comn^odity was not at all known to the Greeks and Romans, though 
it was made in China in very early times, from whence was derived 
the firft knowledge of it ; but the Portnguefe were the firft who 
cultivated it in America, and brought it into requell, as one of the 
materials of a very univerfal luxury in Europe. It is not deter- 
mined, whether the cane, from v»rhich this fubftance is taken, be a 
native of America, or brought thither to their colony of Brafil by 
the Portnguefe, from India and the coaft of Africa ; but, however 
that may be, in the beginning they made the moft, as they ftill 
do the beft, fugars which come to market in this part of the world. 
The juice within the fugar cane is the moft lively, excellent, and th« 
' Jcaft cloying fweet in nature, which, fucked raw, has proved ex- 
tremely nutritive and wholefome. From the molafles rum is diftilled, 
and from the fcummings of the fugar a meaner fpirit is procured. 
The tops of the canes, and the leaves which grow upon the joints, 
make very good provender for their cattle, and the refufe of the 
cane, after grinding, ferves for fire, fo that no part of this excellent 
pbnt is without its ufe. 

' They compute that, when things are well managed, the rum and 

molaftes pay the charges of the plantation, and the fugars are clear 

gain. However, a man cannot begin a fugar plantation of any con- 

j fequencc, 


fequence, not to mention the purchafe of the land, which is very 
high, under a capital of at leafl five thoufand pounds. 

The negroes in the plantations are fubfifted at a very eafy rate 
this is generally by allotting to each family of them a fmall portion 
cf land, and allowing them two days in the week, Saturday and 
Sunday, to cultivate it ; fome are fubfiiled in this manner, but others 
find their negroes a cei'tain portion of Guinea or Indian corn, and to 
fome a fait herring, or a fmall portion of bacon or fait pork, a day. 
All the reft of the charge confifts in a cap, a fhirt, a pair of breeches, 
and a blanket, ahd the profit of their labour yields ten or twelve 
pounds annually. The price of men negroes, upon their firft ar- 
rival, is from thirty to fifty pounds, women and grown boys lefs : 
but fuch negro families as are acquainted with the bufinefs of the 
iflands generally bring above forty pounds upon an average one with 
another ; and there are inftances of a fingle negro man, expert in 
the bufinefs, bringing one hundred and fifty guineas ; and the wealth 
of a planter is generally computed from the number of flaves he 


( ^33 ) 



X HIS iflancl, the largefl of the Antilles, and the m oft valuable, 
lies between 17° and 19° north latitude, and between 76° and 79° 
weft longitude, is near one hundred and eighty miles in length, and 
about fiJtty in breadth ; it approaches in its figure to an oval. The 
vindward paflage right before it hath the ifland of Cuba on the 
weft, and Hifpaniola on the eaft, and is about twenty leagues ia 

This ifland was difcovered by Admiral Chriftopher Columbus ia 
his fecond voyage, who landed upon it May 5, 1494, and was fo 
much charmed with it, as always to prefer it to the reft of the iflands; 
in confequence of which, his fon chofe it for his dukedom. It was 
fettled by Juan d'Efquivel, A. D. 1509, who built the town, which, 
from the place of his birth, he called Seville, and eleven leagues 
farther to the eaft ftood Melilla. Orifton was on the fouth fide of the 
ifland, feated on what is now called the Blue Fields river. All thefe 
are gone to decay, but St. Jago, now Spanifli-Town, is ftill the ca- 
pital. The Spaniards held this country on« hundred and fixty years, 
and in their time the principal commodity was cacoa : they had an 
immenfe ftock of horfes, afies, and mules, and prodigious quantities of 
cattle. The Englifli landed here under Penn and Venables, May 
If, 1654, and quickly reduced the ifland. Cacoa was alfo their 
principal commodity till the old trees decayed, and the new ones did 
not thrive ; and then the planters from Barbadoes introduced fugar 
«anes, which hath been the great ftaple ever fince. 

Vol. IV. H h Th« 


The profpea of this iQand from the fea, by reafon of its conftant 
verdure, and many fair and fafe bays, is wonderfully pleafant. The 
coaft, and for fome miles within the land, is low ; but removing 
farther, it rifes, and becomes hilly. The whole idand is divided 
by a ridge of mountains running eaft and weft, fome rifmg to a great 
height ; and thefe are compofed of rock, and a very hard clay, 
through which, however, the rains that fall inceflantly upon them 
have worn long and deep cavities, which they call gullies. Thefe 
mountains, however, are far from being unpleafant, as they are 
crowned even to their fummits by a variety of fine trees. There arc 
alfo about a hundred rivers that iflue from them on both fides ; and 
though, none of them are navigable for any thing but canoes, are 
both pleafing and profitable in many other refpeds. The climate, like 
that of all countries between the tropics, is very warm towards the 
fea, and in marfliy places unhealthy ; but in more elevated fituations 
cooler, and where people live temperately, to the full as wholefomc 
as any part iof the Well-Indies. The rains fall heavy for about a 
fortnight in the months of May and Oftober ; and as they are the 
caufe of fertility, are fi:iled feafons. Thunder is pretty frequent, 
and fometimes fliowers of hail ; but ice or fnow, except on the tops 
«f the mountains, are never feen, but on them, and at no very greas 
feeight, the air is exceedingly cold. 

The moft eaftern parts of this ridge are famous under the name of 
the Blue mountains. This great chain of rugged rocks defends the 
fouth fide of the ifland from thofe boifterous north-weft winds, which 
might be fatal to their produce. Their ftreams, though fmall, fup- 
ply the inhabitants with good water, which'is a great blefling, as their 
wells are generally brackifli. The Spaniards were perfuaded that 
thefe hills abounded with metals ; but we do not find that they 
wrought any mines, or if they did, it was only copper, of which 
they faid the bells in the church of St. Jago were made. They have 
feveral hot fprings, which have done great cures. The chmate was 
certainly more temperate before the great earthquake, and the ifland 
was fuppofed to be out of the reach of hurricanes, which fince then 
it hath feverely felt. The hear, however, is very much tempered by 
land and fea breezes, and it is aflerted, that the hotteft time of the 
day is about eight in the morning. In the night, the wind blows 
from the land on all fides, fo that bo fliips can then enter their ports. 

In an ifland fo large as this, which contains above five millions of 
acres, it may be very reafohably conceived that there are great va- 
riety of foils. Some of thefe are deep, black, and rich, and mixed 

- " - vv.itji 


with a kind of potter's earth, others fliallow and fandy, and fome of 
a middle nature. There are many favannahs, or wide plains, with- 
out flones, in which the native Indians had luxuriant crops of maize, 
which the Spaniards turned into meadows, and kept in them prodi- 
gious herds of cattle. Some of thefe favannahs are to be met with 
even amongftthe mountains. All thefe difterents foils may be juftly 
pronounced fertile, as they would certainly be found, if tolerably 
cultivated, and applied to proper purpofes. A fuflicientproof of this 
will arife from a very curfory review of the natural and artificial pro- 
duce of this fpacious country. 

It abounds in maize, pulfe, vegetables of all kinds, meadows of 
fine grafs, a variety of beautiful flowers, and as great a variety of 
Granges, lemons, citrons, ?nd other rich fruits, Ufeful animals 
there are of all forts, horfcs, afles, mules, black cattle of a large fize, 
and fheep, the flefh of which is well tafted, though their wool is 
hairy and bad; Here are alfo goats and hogs in great plenty, fea and 
river fifli, wild, tame, and waterfowl. Amongft other commodi- 
ties of great value, they have the fugar cane, cacoa, indigo, pimfentd, 
•otton, ginger, and coffee ; trees for timber and other ufes, fuch as 
mahogany, manchineel, white wood, which no worm will touch, ' 
cedar, olives, and many more. Belides thefe, they have fuftic, red 
wood, and various other materials for dying. To thefe we may add 
a multitude of valuable drugs, fuch as as guaiacum, china farfapa- 
rilla, caffia, tamarinds, variellas, and the prickle pear or opuntia, 
which produces the cochineal, with no inconfiderable number of odo- 
riferous gums. Near the coaft they have fait ponds, with which 
they fupply their own confumption, and might make any quantity 
they pleafed. 

As this ifland abounds with rich commodities, it is happy likcwife 
in having a number of fine and fafe ports. Point Morant, the eartern 
extremity of the ifland, hath a fair and commodious bay. Faffing on 
to the fouth there is Port-Royal ; on a neck of land which forms one 
fide of it, there flood once the faireft town in this ifland ; and the 
harbour is as fine a one as can be wiflied, capable of holding a thou- 
fand large vefTels, and flill the flation of the^Englifli fquadron. Old 
harbour is alfo a convenient port, fo is Maccary bay ; and there are at 
leaft twelve more between this and the weftern extremity, which is 
point Negrillo, where fliips of war lie when there is a war with Spain. 
On the north fide there is Orange bay, Cold harbour, Rio Novo, Mon- 
tf go bay, Port Antonio, one of finefl in the ifland, and ligveral others. 

H h z The 


The north-weft winds, which fometimes blow furioufly on this coaft, 
render the country on that fide iefs fit for canes, but pimento thrives 
Wonderfully ; and certainly many other flaples might be raifed in 
fmall plantations, which are frequent in Barbadoes, and might be 
very advantageous here in many refpefts. 

The town of Port-Royal ftood on a point of land running far out 
into the fea, narrow, fandy, and incapable of producing any thing ; 
yet the excellence of trhe port, the convenience of having fliips of 
ftxcn. hundred tons coming clofe up to their wharfs, and other ad- 
vantages, gradually attrafted inhabitants in fuch a manner, that 
though many of their habitations were built on piles, there were near 
two thoufand houfes in the town in its moft flourifliing ftate, and 
which let at high rents. The earthquake by which it was overthrown 
happened on the 7th of June, 1692, and numbers of people periflied 
in it. This earthquake was followed by an epidemic difeafe, of 
which upwards of thi-ee thoufand died ; yet the place was rebuilt, 
but the greatell part was reduced to allies bv a fire that happened on 
the 9th of January, 1703, and then the inhabitants removed moftly 
to Kingfton. It was, however, rebuilt for the third tiaie, and was 
raifing towards its former grandeur, when it was overwhelmed by the 
fea, Auguft?8, 1722; there is, notwithftanding, a fmall town there 
at this day. Hurricanes fince that time have often happened, and oc- 
cafioned terrible devaftation ; one in particular, in 17S0, which al- 
mofl overwhelmed the little fea port town of Savannah la Mar. 

The ifland is divided into three counties, Middlefex, Surry, and 
Cornwall, containing twenty parifties, over each of which prefides a 
magiftrate, ftyled a cuilos j but thefe parifhes in point of fize are a 
kind of hundreds. The whole contains thirty-fix towns and villages, 
eighteen churches and chapels, and about tvventy-thiee thoufand 
white inhabitants. 

The adminiflration of public affairs is by a governor and council of 
royal appointment, and the reprefencatives of the people in the lower 
Houfe of AfTembly. They meet at Spanifli-tovvn, and things are 
conduced with great order and dignity. The lieutenant-governor 
and commander in chief has five thouland pounds currency, or three 
thoufand five hundred and feventy-one pounds eii,ht fliillings and 
fix-pence three farthings ilerling, be'ides which, he has a houfe in 
Spanifli-town, a pen or a farm adjoining, and a pol nk or mountain 
for provifions, a fecretary, an under fecretary, and a domefiic chap- 
lain, and other, which make his income at leafl eii^lu iliouiand 



five hundred and fifty pounds currency, or fix thoufand one hundred 
pounds fterling. 

The honourable the council confifts of a prefident and ten mem- 
bers, with a clerk, at two hundred and feventy pounds, chaplain one 
hundred pounds, uflier of the black rod and melFenger, two hundred 
and fifty pounds. 

The honourable the aflembly confifts of forty-three members, one 
of whom is chofen fpeaker. To this affembly belongs a clerk, with one 
thoufand pounds falary ; a chaplain, one hundred and fifty pounds ; 
mefl^enger, feven hundred pounds ; deputy, one hundred and forty 
pounds ; and printer, two hundred pounds. 

The number of members returned by each parifli and county are, 
for Middiefex feventeen, viz. St. Catharine three, St. Dorothy two, 
St. John two, St. Thomas in the Vale two, Clarendon two, Vere 
two, St. Mary two, St. Ann two : for Surry fixteen, viz. Kingfton 
three, Port-Royal three, St. Andrew two, St. David two, St. Thomas 
in the Eaft two, Portland two, St. George two : for Cornwall ten, 
viz. St. Elizabeth two, Weftmorland two, Hanover two, St. James 
two, Trelawney two. 

The high court of chancery confifts of the chancellor (governor for 
the time being) twenty-five mafters in ordinary, and twenty mafters 
extraordinary, a regifter, and clerk ©f the patents, ferjeant at arms, 
and mace-bearer. The court of vice admiralty has a fole judge, 
judge furrogate, and commifTary, king's advocate, principal regifter, 
marflial, and a deputy-marflial. The court of ordinary confifts of 
the ordinary (governor for the time being) and a clerk. The fu- 
preme court of judicature has a chief juftice and fixteen afliftant 
judges, attorney-general, clerk of the courts, clerk of the crown, 
foliciior of the crown, thirty-three commiffioners for taking affida- 
vits, a provoft-marfhal-general, and eight deputies, eighteen barrif- 
ters, befides the attorney-general and advocate-general, and up- 
wards of one hundred and twenty praftifing attornies at law. 

The trade of this ifland will heft appear by the quantity of fhip- 
ping, and the number of feamen to which it gives employment, and 
the nature and quantity of its exports. The following is an account 
from the books of the infpeftor-general of Great-Britain, of the 
number of vefle;ls of all kinds there regiftered, tonnage, and number 
of men, which cleared from the feveral ports of entry in Jamaica, in 
the year 1787, exclulive of coafting floops, wherries, &c, 

4 For 



of Veffels. 



For Great-Britain . 








American States 

• ^33 

-1 3041 


Britifh Afnerican Col( 

3nies 66 



Foreign Weil-Indies 




Africa . . , . 




Total 474 85888 9344 

It muft, however, beobferved, that as many of the veffels clearing 
for America and the foreign Weft-Indies make two or more voyages 
in the year, it is ufual, in computing the real number of thofe vef- 
fels, their tonnage and men, to deduft one third from the official 
numbers. With this correction the total to all parts is four hundred 
veffels, containing feventy-eight thoufand eight hundred and fixty- 
two tons, navigated by eight thoufand eight hundred and forty>-fiv€ 

The exports for the fame year are given on the fame authority, as 
follows J • i 





1— 1 


r\ O 

2:"l 1 I 1 




o o o ^^ o o 

t~^ O CO o c> O 

rhoo «^'^CO '^ O 
•-< t-^ O ro u-vO 

oo r^ O >■'"■ COCO 

tT "^ o v^r 

N e< nO « 







r^ O 
vD O O 





O • 
flj en 



|l I 1 1 1 





l^ O « 00 o 


vO O sO O e« 1 

O " o >- 







III 1 1 I 






-1- o o o 

o o ^^ o 








'i- o 
c^^l ] 1 1 






o . o o . 

CO i 00 c<^> 1 1 





|l 1 1 1 1 





O O '-^ o o o 

^ O N O O O 

*^ "Tr '^'^ *^ ^ 

a^ O H O 
oo ►-» c<-j e» 





^1 1 1 1 1 




<-A o o o o 


«< o o o o 

O N sD <s Ci 
t^CO — OO 








»-c^ O O O O 

« O O O O 

rrco O"^ ^X 1 

W-. « CO 

»-^ CN CO 







' ' • in • 
U en 

« C .i: 



? : 

3 ' 



. s J '"I ; 

r; c3 4> <; 'S .ii 


But it muft be noted, that a confiderable part of the cotton, indigo, 
tobacc©, mahogany, dye-woods, and mifceJlaneous article?, included 
in the preceding account, is the produce of the foreign Weft-Indies 
imported into Jamaica, partly under the free-port law, and partly in 
fmall Britifla veflels employed in a contraband traffic with the Spanifli 
American territories, payment of which is made chiefly in Britilh 
raanufaftures and negroes ; and confiderable quantities of bullion, 
obtained by the fame means, are annually remitted to Great-Britain, 
of which no precife accounts can be procured. 

The General Account of Imports into Jamaica will ftand nearly 
as follows, viz. 


From Great-Britain, "| £. s.d. £. s. d. 

direft, according I Britifh manu- 1 
to a return of the )■ faftures J ^^6,657 2 3 

Infpe6tor-General j Foreign mer- 1 
for 1787. j chandife J ^^'^^S 3 ^ 

758,932 5 4 

From Ireland, allowing a moiety of the whole import 
to the Britifli Weft-Indies, confifting of manu- 
factures and falted provifions to the amount of 
350,0001. .... 175,000 o © 

From Africa, five thoufand three hundred and forty- 
five negroes,* at 40I. fterling each — (this is' wholly 
a Britifli trade, carried on in fliips from England) 213,800 o o 

Fi'om the Britifli Colonies in America, including about 
twenty thoufand quintals of falted cod from New- 
foundland .... 30,000 © o 

From the United States, Indian corn, wheat, flour, 

rice, lumber, ftaves, &c. imported in Britifli fliips 90,000 o • 

From Madeira and Teneriffe, in fliips trading circui- 
toufly from Great-Britain, five hundred pipes of 
wine, exclufive of wines for re-exportation, at 30I. 
fterling the pipe . , , 1 5,000 o o 

1,282,732 5 4 

* Being an average of the whole number imported and retained in the ifland for 
fen years, 1778 to 1787, as letumed by the infpeilor-general. 



I' s. cL 
Brought over - 1,282,732 5 4 
From the foreign Weft-Indies, under the free-port law, 

&c. calculated on an average of three years * 1 50,000 o o 

^.1,432,732 5 4 

* From returns of the infpeaor-gcncrn'.. The follo^ving ar^ the particulars for the 
year 1787. 

Cotton wool 



iq-IjOOO lbs. 




64,750 lbs. 

Cattle, viz. 











- 1,202 No. 

Dying woods 



5,077 Tons. 

Gum guaiacum 



79 B.irrels. 




4,537 No. 




4,663 lbs. 




9,993 Planks. 

Tortoife fhell 



655 lbs. 




52,850 No. 

Vol. IV. li A tlETVRN 


A Return of the number of Sugar Plantations in the iflanJ 
of JAMAICA, and the Negro Slaves thereon, on the 28th of 
March, 1789, diflinguiihing the feveral Parrflies. 

County of Middlefex. 

Parifli of St. Mary . . 

Do. St. Anne . . . . 

Do. St. John . . . . 

Do. St. Dorothy . . . 
Do. St. Tho. in the Vale 

Do. Clarendon . . . , 

Do. Vere 

Do. St. Catharine . . 

Nu. of 












10,1 i;o 




Total in the County of Middlelex 244 43,626 

County of Surry. 

Parifli of St. Andrew 
Do. St. George . . 
Do. Portland . . . 
Do. Port-Royal . . 
Do. St. David . . . 
Do. St.Tho. intheEaft 
Do. Kingfton . . . 











Total in the County of Surry 159 

County of Cornwall. 

Parifli of Trelawney 
Do. St. James . . . 
Do. Hanover . . . 
Do. Weftmoreland , 
Do. St. Elizabeth 





62 11,219 


Total in the County of Cornwall ^07 



O S = U-. 

'" £: -a .^ 
r- M t; " 

Total in Jamaica 7 loi 128,798- 


( 243 ) 



>ARBADOES, the moft eafteily of all the Caribbce iflands, fulv 
je£l to Great-Britain, and, according to the beft geographers, lying 
between 59° 50' and 62" 2' of weft longitude, and between 12° 56' 
and 13° 16' of north latitude. Its extent is not certainly known ; 
the moll general opinion is, that it is twenty-five miles from north 
to fouth, and fifteen from eaft to weft ; but thefe menfurations are 
fiibjeft to fo many difficuhies and uncertainties, that it will perhaps 
convey a more adequate idea of this ifland to tell the reader, that in 
reality it does not contain above one huadred and feven thoufand 
acres. The climate is hot but not unvvholefome, the heat being qua- 
lified by fea breezes ; and a temperate regimen renders this ifland as 
fafe to live in as any climate fouth of Great-Britain ; and, according 
to the opinion of many, as even Great-Britain itfelf. This ifland 
has on its eaft fide two ftreams that are called rivers, and in the 
middle is faid to have a bituminous fpring, which fends forth a liquor 
like tar, and ferves for the fame ufes as pitch or lamp oil. The 
ifland abounds in wells of good water, and has feveral refer voirs 
fur .rain water. Some parts of the foil are faid to be hollowed into 
caves, fome of them capable of containing three hundred people. 
Thefe are imagined to have been the lurking-places of runaway ne- 
groes, but may as probably be natural excavations. The woods 
that formerly grew upon tlie ifland have been all cut down, and 
the ground converted into fugar plantations. When thoie planta- 
tions were firft formed, the foil was prodigioufly fertile, but has fince 
been worn out, infomuch, that about the year 1730. the planters 
were obliged to raife cattle for the fake of their dung, by which 
means the profit of their plantations was reduced to lefs than a 
tenth of its ufual value. Notwithftanding the fmallnefs of Barbadoes, 
its foil is different, being in fome places fandy and light, and others 
rich, and in others fpungy, but all of it is cultivated according to its 
proper nature, fo that the ifland prefents to the eye the moft beauti^ 

I i 3 tul 


fill appearance that can be imagined. Oranges and lenions grow in 
Barbadoes in great plenty, and in their iitmofl perfedion. The le- 
mon juice here has a peculiar fragrancy. The citrons of Barbadoes 
afford the beft drams and fweetmeats of any in the world, the Bar- 
badoes ladies excelling in the art of preferving the rind of the citron 
fruit. The juice bf the limes, or dwarf lemons, is the moft agree- 
able fouring we know, and great quantities of it have of late been im- 
ported into Britain and Ireland. The pine apple is alfo a native of 
Barbadoes, and grows there to much greater perfedtion than it can 
be made to do ifi Europe by any artificial means. A vaft number 
of different trees peculiar to the climate are alfo found to flourifli in 
Barbadoes in great perfection, fuch as the aloe, mangrove, calabafli,. 
cedar, cotton, mailic, &c. Here likewife are produced fome fen- 
fitive plants, with a good deal of garden rtuflf, which is common in 
other places. In flaort, a native of the fineil, the richefl, and moft 
diverfified country in Europe, can hardly form an idea of the variety 
of delicious, and at the fame time nutritive vegetable productions with 
which the ifland abounds. 

When Barbadoes was firfl difcovered by the Enghfli, few or na 
quadrupeds were found upon it, except hogs, which had been left 
there by the Portuguefe. For convenience of carriage to the fea fide, 
fome of the planters at firft procured camels, which undoubtedly 
would in all refpcCis have been preferable to horfes for their fugar 
and other works ; but the nature of the climate difagreeing with 
that animal, it was foimd impoffible to preferve the breed. They 
then applied for horfes to Old and New-England ; from the former 
they had thofe that were fit for fliow and draught ; from the latter 
thole that were proper for mounting their milifa, and for the faddle. 
They had likewife fome of an inferior breed from CurafTao, and 
other fettlements. They are reported to have had their firft breed 
of cattle froai Bonaviila, and the ifle of May ; they now breed 
upon the ifiand, and often do the work of horfes. Their aifes are 
very ferviceable in carrying burdens to and from the plantations. 
TIk' hogs of Barbadoes are finer eating than thofe of Britain, but 
the few flicep they have are not near fo good. They likewife have 
goats, which, when young, are excellent food. Raccoons and 
monkeys are alfo found here in gicat abundance. A variety of 
birds are produced on Barbadoes, of which the humming bin! is the 
Aiofl remarkable. Wild fowl do not often frequent this illand, but 
fometimes teal arc found, near their ponds, A bird which ihey call 



tlie man of war, is faid to meet fliips at twenty leagues from land,, 
and their return is, to the inhabitants, a fure fign of the arrival 
of thefe fliips. When the wind blows from the fouth and fouth- 
weft, they have flocks of curlews, plovers, fnipcs, wild pigeons, 
and wild ducks. The wild pigeons are very fat and plentful at fuch 
feafons, and ratlier larger than thofe of England. The tame pi- 
geons, pullets, ducks, and poultry of all kinds, that are bred at 
Barbadoes, have alfo a fine flavour, and are accounted more deli- 
cious than thofe of Europe. Their rabbits are fcarce ; they have 
no hares, and if they have deer of any kind, they are kept as curio- 
fities. The infeds of Barbadoes are not venomous, nor do either 
their fnakes or their fcorpions ever fling. The mulkettoes are 
troublefome, and bite, but are more tolerable in Barbadoes than 
on the continent. Various other infcfts are found on the ifland, 
fome of which are troublefome, but in no greater degree than thofe. 
that are produced by every warm fummer in England. Barbadoes 
is well fuppHed with fifli, ar.d fome caught in the fca furrounding 
it are alnioft peculiar to itfelf, fuch as the parrot fifli, fnappers, 
grey cavallos, terbums, and coney fifli. The mullets, lobfters, 
and crabs caught here are excellent ; and the green turtle is, 
perhaps, the greateft delicacy that ancient or modern luxury can 
boafl: of. At Barbadoes ihis delicious fliell fifli feldom fells for 
lefs than a fliilling a pound, and often for more. There is found in 
this ifland a kind of land crab, which eats herbs wherever it can 
And them, and flielters itfelf in houfes and hullovv trees. According 
to report, they are a fliell flfli of pallage, for in March they travel to 
tbe fea in great numbers. 

The inhabitants may be reduced to three clafles, viz. the maflers, 
the white fervants, and the blacks. The former are eitijer Englifli^ 
Scots, or Irifli ; but the great encourageruenc given by the go- 
vernment to the peopling of this and other Wel-lnclian iflands, 
induced fome Dutch, French, Portuguefe, and Jews, to fettle, 
among them ; by which, after a certain time, they acquire the 
rights of naturalization in Great-Britain. The white Icrvants, 
whether by covenant or purchafe, *:ad more eafy lives than tiieday-. 
labourers in England, and when they come to be ovL-rfeers, their 
wages and other allowances are confiderable. The manners of the 
white inhabitants in general are the fame as in rnoft poliie towns and 
countries in Europe. The capital of the ifland is Bridge-town. 



When the Englifh, fome time after the year 162^, firft' landed 
here, they found it the niofl deftitute place they had hitherto 
vifited. It had not the leaft appearance of ever having been 
peopled even by favages. There was no kind of beafts of pafture 
or of prey, no fruit, no herb, no root fit for fupporting the life of 
man. Yet, as the climate was fo good, and the foil appeared fer- 
tile, fome gentlemen of fmall fortune in England refolved to become 
adventurers thither. The trees were fo large, and of a wood fo 
hard and flubborn, that it was with great difficulty they could clear 
as much ground as was neceflary for their fubfiflence. By Tinre- 
mitting perfeverance, however, they brought it to yield them a to- 
lerable fupport ; and they found that cotton and indigo agreed well 
with the foil, and that tobacco, which was beginning to come into 
repute in England, anfwered tolerably. Thefe profpefts, toge- 
ther with the ftorm between king and parliament, which was begin- 
ning to break out in England, induced many new adventurers to 
tranfport themfelves into this illand. And what is extremely re- 
piarkable, fo great was the increafe of people in Barbadoes, twenty- 
five years after its firft fettlement, that in 16-0, it contained more 
than fifty thoufand whites, and a much greater number of negro 
and Indian (laves. The latter they acquired by means not at all to 
their honour ; for they feized upon all thofe unhappy men, with- 
out any pretence, in the neighbouring iflands, and carried them into 
flavery ; a practice which has rendered the Caribbee Indians irrecon- 
cileable to us ever fince. They had begun a little before this to cul- 
tivate fugar, which foon rendered them extremely wealthy. The 
number of flaves therefore was ftill augmented ; and in 1676 it is fup- 
pofed that their number amounted to one hundred thoufand, which, 
together with fifty thoufand whites, make one hundred and fifty thou- 
fand on this fmall fpot ; a degree of population unknown in Holland, 
in China, or any other part of the world mofl renowned for num- 
bers. At the above period, Barbadoes employed four hundred fail of 
fliips, one with another, of one hundred and fifty tons, in their trade. 
Their annual exports in fugar, indigo, ginger, cotton, and citron- 
water, were above thirty-five thoufand pounds, and their circulating 
cafli at home v/as two hundred thoufand pounds. Such was the in- 
creafe of population, trade, and wealth, in the courfe of fifty yeais. 
But lincc that time this idand has been much on the decline, which is 
to be attributed partly to the growth of the French fiigar colonies, 
and partly tu our own eftablifliments in the neighbouring illes. Their 

5 number* 


numbers at prefent are faid to be twenty thonfand whites, and one 
litindred thonfand flaves. Their commerce confifts of the fume ar- 
ticles as formerly, though they deal in them to lefs extent. 

Barbadoes is divided into five diflrifts and eleven pariflies, and con- 
tains four towns, viz. Bridge-town, Oilins, or Charles-town, St. 
James's, formerly called the Hole, and Speight's-tov/n. Bridge-town, 
the capital, before it was deftnjyed by the fires of 1766, confifled of 
about fifteen hundred houfes, which were moflly built of brick ; and 
it is ftill the feat of government, and maybe called the chief refidence 
of the governor, who is provided with a country villa called Pilgrims,- 
fituated within a mile of it ; his falary was raifed by Queen Anne 
from twelve hundred to two thoufand pounds per ann. the whole of 
which is paid out of the exchequer, and charged to the account of the 
four and a half per cent. duty. The form of the government of this 
ifland fo very nearly refembles that of Jamaica, which has already been 
defcribed, that it is unnecelFary to enter into detail, except to obferve 
that the council is compofed of twelve members, and the aflembly of 
twenty-two. The moii: important variation refpeds the court of 
chancery, which in Barbadoes is conftituted of the governor and 
council, whereas in Jamaica the governor is fole chancellor. On the 
other hand, in Barbadoes, the governor fits in council, even when the 
latter are afting in a legiflative capacity : this in Jamaica would be 
confidered injproper and unconftitutional. It may alfo be. obferved^ 
that the courts of grand feirions, common pleas and exchequer in 
Barbadoes, are diftinft from each other, and not as in Jamaica^ 
united and blended in one fupreme court of judicature. 

We fliall clofe our accountof Barbadoes with the following authen- 
tic document. 







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( 249 ) 


X HIS ifland, commonly called St. Kitt's, is fituated in 62° weft 
longitude and 1 7° north latitude, about fourteen leagues from An- 
tigua ; is twenty miles long and about feven broad ; it was difco- 
vered in November, 1493, by Columbus, and named after himfelf, 
but was never planted or poflefled by the Spaniards : it is in reality 
the oldeft of all the Britifli fettlements in the Weft-Indies, and the 
common mother both of the French and Englifli fettlements in th? 
Caribbean iflands. It was firft fettled by a Mr. Warner and fourteen 
other perfons in 1623. Mr. Warner, a refpeftable gentleman, had 
accompanied Capt. North in a voyage to Surinam, where he had 
beconie acquainted with a Capt. Painton, a very experienced feaman, 
who fuggefted to him the advantages of a fettlement on one of the 
Weft-India iflands deferted by the Spaniards, and pointed out this 
as eligible for fuch an undertaking. Mr. Warner returning to Eu- 
rope in 1620, determined to carry this projeft into execution. Ho 
accordingly failed with the above party to Virginia, from whence 
he took his paflage to St. Chriftopher's, where he arrived in the 
month of JaTiuary, 1623, and by the month of September following 
had raifed a good crop of tobacco, which they propofed to make their 
ftaple commodity. 

Unfortunately, their plantations were dcftroyed the latter end of 
the year by an hurricane; in confequence of which calamity, Mr. 
Warner returned to England, and obtained the powerful patronage 
of the Earl of Carlifle, who caufed a fliip to be fitted out and laden 
with all kinds of neceflaries, which arrived on the 18th of May 
following ; and thus faved a fettlement which had otherwife died in 
its infancy. Warner himfelf did not, however, return till the 
year 1625, when he carried with him a large number of other per- 
fons. About this time, and, according to fome writers, on the fame 
day with Warner, arrived D'Efnambuc, the captain of, and about 
thirty hardy veterans belonging to, a French privateer, which had 
been much damaged in an engagement with a Spanifh galleon ; they 
were received kindly by the Englifli, and remained with them on the 

Vol. IV. K k ifland, 


iflarid, from whence, by their united endeavours, they drove the 
original inhabitants. 

After this exploit, thefe two kaders returned to their refpeftive 
countries to folicit fuccours, and bringing with them the name of 
conquerors, they met with every encouragement. Warner was 
knighted, and, by the influence of his patron, fent back in 1626 
with four hundred fref>i recruitb, amply furniflied with neceflariej 
cf all kinds. D'Efnambuc obtained from Cardinal Richelieu, the 
then miniller of France, the eflablifhment of a feparate company^ 
to trade with this and fome other iflands. Subfcriptions, howeverj 
did not come in very rapid-, and the (hips fent out by the new com- 
pany were fo badly provided, that of five hundred and thirty-two 
new fettlers, who fdWed from France in 1627, the greater part pe- 
riflied miferably at fea for want of food, The Englifti received the 
furvivors, and, to prevent contefls about limits, the commanders of 
each nation divided the ifland as equally as poffible among their re- 
fpecftive followers. The Hland thus continued in the hands of the 
French and Englifii until the peace of Utrecht, when it was finally 
ceded to Great-Britain. We are not, however, to fuppofe, that 
during this period harmony and good-will prevailed ; on the con- 
trary, the Englifh were three times driven off the ifland, and their 
plantations laid wafte : nor were the French much lefs futferers. Such 
are the confequences of thofe curfed fyflems or maxims of govern- 
ment, which beget a fpirit of enmity againfl all thofe who are of a 
diff'erent nation. After the peace of Utrecht, the French pofleffions, 
a few excepted, were fold for the benefit of the Englifli government; 
and in 1783, eighty thoufand pounds of the money was granted as 
a marri-jge portion to the Princefs Anne, who was betrothed to the 
Prince of Orange. In 1782, it was attacked and taken by the 
T^rench, but again ceded to Britain at the peace of 1783. 

About one-half of this ifland is fuppofed to be unfit for cultiva- 
tion, the interior parts confifting of many high and barren mountains, 
between which are horrid precipices and thick woods. The loftiefk 
mountain, which is evidently a decayed volcano, is called mount 
IMifjry; it rifes three thoufand feven hundred and eleven feet per- 
pendicular height from the fea. Nature has, however, made a re- 
compcnfe for the fleriliiy of the mountains by the fertility of the 
plains. The foil is a dark grey loam, very light and porous, and is 
fuppofed by Mr. Edwards * to be the produftion of fubterraneous 

* Vide Hiftoiy of Weft-Indies, vol. i. p. 415. 



OF ST. Christopher's. 251 

fires finely incorporated with a pure loam or virgin mould ; this foil 
is peculiarly favourable to the culture of fugar. In the fouth-weft 
part of the illand hot fulphureous fprings are found at the foot of 
fome of the mountains : the air is, on the whole, falubrious, 
but the ifland is fubjefV to hurricanes. 

St. Chriftopher's is divided into nine pariflies, and contains four 
towns and hamlets, viz. Bafleterrc, (the capital) Sandy point, Old 
road, and Deep bay ; of thefe, Bafleterre and Sandy point are ports 
of entry eftabliflied by law. The fortifications on this ifland are 
Charles fort and Brimftone hill near Sandy point, three batteries at 
Bafleterre, one at Fig-tree bay, another at Palmeton point, and fome 
others of little importance. 

St. Chriftopher's contributes twelve hundred pounds currency per 
annum towards the fupport of the governor-general, befides the per- 
quifites of his office, which in war time are very confiderable : the 
council confifts of ten members ; the houfe of aflcmbly of twenty- 
four reprefentatives, of whom fifteen make a quorum. The quali- 
fication for a reprefentative is a freehold of forty acres of land, or a 
houfe worth forty pounds per annum ; for an ele<5tor, a freehold of 
ten pounds per annum : the governor is chancellor by office, and 
fits alone on the bench. The jurifdidion of the courts of king's 
bench and common pleas centers in one fuperior court, wherein 
jufl!ice is adminiftered by a chief juftice and tour afiiftant judges, the 
former appointed by the king, the latter by the governor in the king's 
name ; they all hold their offices during pleafure. The office of the 
chief judge is worth about fix hundred pounds per annum ; thoie of 
the affiftant judges trifling. The prelent number of inhabitants are 
eftimated at four thoufand white inhabitants, three hundred free 
blacks and mulattoes, and abcjut twenty-fix thoufand flaves. 

As in the other Britifli iflands in the neighbourhood, all the white 
males from fixteen to fixty are obliged to enlift in the militia ; the^' 
ferve without pay, and form two regiments of about three hundred 
effedive men each : thefe, with a company of free blacks, confti- 
tuted the whole for<;e of the ifland before the laft war. Since that 
period, a fmall addition of Britifli troops have, wc believe, iu gene- 
ral been kept there. 

K k 1. AN- 

( 252 ) 



.NTIGUA is fitnated about twenty leagues eaft oF St. Chrif*- 
topher's, in weft longitude 62° 5', and north latitude 17'^ 30'. It ii 
about fifty miles in circumference, ana is reckoned the largefl: of ail 
the Britilli Leeward iflands. 

This ifiand has neither ftream nor fpring oi frejh water ; this in- 
convi»nce, which rendered it uninhabitable to the Caribbees, de- 
terred for rorae time Europeans from attempting a permanent efta- 
blifliment upon it ; but few, if any, are the obftacles of Nature, 
which civilifed man \\'\\\ not overcome, more efpecially when intereil 
fpurs him on. The foil of Antigua was found to be fertile, and it 
foon prelentcd itfclf to the view of enterprifing genius, that by 
means of cifterns the necelfity of fprlngs and ftreams might be fu- 
perfeded. Hence, as early as 1632, a fon of Sir Thomas Warner, 
«nd a number of other Engliflimen, fettled here, and began the cul' 
tivation of tobacco. In 1674, Colonel Codrington, of Barbadoes, 
removed to'this ifland, and fucceeded fo well in the culture of fugar, 
that, animated by his example, and aided by his experience, many 
others engaged in the fame line of bufincfs. A few years after, Mr. 
Codrington was declared captain-general and commander in chief of 
the Leeward iflands, and carried his attention to their welfare farther 
than perhaps any other governor either before or fince has done, 
and the good cftecls of his wii'dom and attention were foon manifeft. 
Antigua, in particular, had (b far increaied, that in 1690, when 
General Codrington headed an expedition againfl the French fettle- 
ment at St. Chriflopher's, it furniflied eight hundred efFe<ftive men. 
Mr, Codrington dying in 169S, was fucceeded by his fonChriltopher, 
who, purfuing his fadicr's ftcps, held the government till 1704., 
when he was fuperfeded by Sir William JNlatthews, who died iooh 
after his arrival. Queen Anne then beftowed the government on 
Daniel Park, Efq. a man who for debauchery, villany and defpo- 
tifm, though he may have been equalled, was certainly never ex- 
celled. His government lafted, till Dec. 17 10, when his oppreffions 


bF ANtlGUA. 2^^ 

?»rovired tbe inhabitants to refiftance -. he \v?s foiled by the etiragcJ 
tnuhitude and torn to pieces, and his reeking limbs fcutcred about 
the ftreet. An inquiry was inftituttd with rcfpeft to the perpetra- 
tion of this aiSl ; the people of England were divided, I'ome looking 
^ipon his death as an aifl of rebellion agaiull tlic crown, ' otlicrs 
Viewing it as a juft facrifice to liberty. The governmenr, ho\ve\ er, 
after a full inquiry, were fo fully fatisfied of Park's guilty and ille- 
gal conduJl, that, much to their honour, they ilTucd a general par- 
don for all perfohs concerned in his death, and, fome time after- 
wards, fanftioned the promotion of two of the principal perpetra- 
tors to feats in the council. 

The principal article raifed in this ifland is fugar ; befides which, 
cotton-wool and tobacco, is raifed in considerable quantities, and 
iikewife provifions to a conliderable amount in favourable years. 

Crops here are very unequal, and it is exceeding difficult to fnr- 
nifli an average: in 1779, there was ihipped three thouland three 
hundred and eighty-two hogfteads and five hundred and feventy-ninc 
tierces of fugar: in 1782, the crop was fifteen thoufand one hun- 
dred and two hogflieads and one thoufand fix hundred and three 
tierces; in 1770, ,1773, and 1778, there were no crops of any kind,, 
©wing to loner continued drouoht. The illind is procrreffivelv de- 
creafing in produce and population. The laft accurate returns to 
government were made in the year 1774, when the white inhabitants 
of all ages and fexes v.ere two thoufand five hundred and ninety, and 
the enflaved blacks thirty-feven thoufand eight hundred and eight : 
feventeen thoufand hogflieads of fugar of fixteen hundred weight 
each, are deemed, on the whole, a good faving crop ; as one-half of 
the canes only are cut annually, this is about an hogfliead to tlie I'xce. 
Antigua is divided into fix pariflies and eleven diftn^ls, and con- 
tains fix tow-ns and villages. St. John's, .which is the capital. Par- 
ham, Falmouth, Willoughby bay. Old road, and James's fort ; the 
two firft are the legal ports of entry. The ifland has many excellent 
harbours, particularly Englifli harbour and St. John's, at the former 
of which there is a dock-yard and arfenal eftublifhed by tlie Englifli 

The military cftablifliment here is two regiments of infantry and 
two of militia, befides which there is a fquadron of dragoons and a 
battalion of artillery raifed in the ifland. The governor, or captain- 
general, of the Leeward iflands, though directed by his inftruc- 
tion«; to vifit each ifland within his governineot, is generally fta- 
« tiojaarv 


tionary at Antigua : in hearing the caufes from the other iflands 
he fits alone, but in caufes arifing within the ifland he is affifted by 
a council ; and by an aft of affembly, fanftioned by^ the crown, 
the prefident and a majority of the council may hear and determine 
chancery caufes during the abfence of the governor- general ; befides 
this court, there is a court of King's Bench, a court of Commoa 
Pleas, and a court of Exchequer. 

The legiflature of Antigua confifls of the commander in chief, a 
council of twelve members, and an affembly of twenty-five. The le- 
giflature of Antigua fet the firft example of a melioration of the cri- 
minal law reipedting negro flaves, by allowing them a trial by jury,, 
&c. And the inhabitants, ftill more to their honour, have encouraged 
the propagation of the gofpel among their flaves. 


( 2^5 ) 





JTRENADA lies in weft longitude 6 1° 40', north ktitu^le is'^o'. 
It is the lad of the windward Caribbers^ and lies thirty leagues north 
of New-Andalufia, on the continent. According to foine, it is 
twenty-four leagues in compafs ; according to others, only twenty- 
two; and it is faid to be thirty miles in length, and in fome pla^es 
fifteen in breadth. The ifland abounds with wild game ar>d lilh ; it 
produces alfo very fine timber, but the cocoa tree is obferved not to 
thrive here fo well as in the other iflands. A lake on a high mountain, 
about the m'ddte of the ifland, fupplies it with frefli water ilreams. 
Several bays and harbours lie round the illand, fome of which might 
be fortified to great advantage ; io that it is very convenient for fliip- 
ping, not being fubjeft to hurricanes. The foil is capable of pro- 
ducing tobacco, fugar, indigo, peafe and millet. 

Columbus found it inhabited by a fierce, warlike people, who 
were left in quiet pofTeflion of the illand till 1650; though, accord- 
ing to others, in 1638, M. Poincy, a Frenchman, attempted to ir>ake 
a fettlement in Grenada, but w as driven off by the Caribbeans, who 
refortcd to this ifland in greater numbers than to the neighbouring 
ones, probably on account of the game with which it abounded. In 
1650, however, Monf. Parquet, governor of Martin'.co, carried o\er 
from that ifland two hundred men, furnifiied with prcicnts 10 re- 
concile the lavages to them ; but with arms to Uibduc tl.eni, in cafe 
they fliould prove untraftable. The favagef are faid to have been 
frightened into fubmillion by the number uf Frenchmen ; but, ac- 
cording to fome French writers, the chief not only welcomed the 
new-comers, but, in confideration of fo.-i^.e knives, hatchets^ fciflars, 
and other toys, yielded to Parquet the fovereignty of the ifland, re- 
ferving to themfclves their own habitations. The Abbe Raynal in- 
forms us, that thefe firft French coloaifls, imagining they had pur- 



chafed the ifland by thefe trifles, afTumed the fovcreignty, and fooa 
aded as tyrants. The Caribs, unable to contend with them by 
force, took their ufual method of murdering all thofe whom they 
f jund in a defencelefs flate. This produced a war ; and the French 
fettlers, having received a reinforcement of three hundred men from 
Mariinico, forced the favages to retire to a mountain ; from whence, 
after exhaufting all their arrows, they rolled down great logs of 
v.'ood on their enemies. Here they were joined by other favages 
from the neighbouring iflands, and again attacked the French, but 
were defeated anew ; and were at laft driven to fuch dcfperation, that 
forty of them, who had efcaped from the flaughter, jumped from a 
precipice into the fca, where they all periflied, rather than fall into 
the hands of their implacable enemies. From thence the rock was 
called le morne des favteurs^ or, " the hill of the leapers," which 
name it fiill retains. The French then deflroyed the habitations and 
j\ll the provifions of the favages j but frefli fupplies of the Carib- 
beans arriving, the war was renewed with great vigour, and great 
RuiT^ibers of the French were, killed. Upon this they refolved totally 
to exterminate the naiives ; and having accordiiigly attacked the fa-. 
vages unawares, they inhumanly put to death the women and chil» 
dren, as well as the men ; burning all their boats and canoes, to cut 
off alio communication between the few furvivars and the neioh- 


touring iflands.* Notwithilauding all thefe barbarous precautions, 
Jiowever, the Carihbees proved the irreconcileable enemies of the 
French ; and their frequent infurrections at laft obliged Parquet to 
fell aU his property in the iilaad to the Count de Cerillac in 1657. f 
The new proprietor, who purchafed Parquet's property for thirty 
thouiand crowns, ient thither a perfon of brutal manners to govern 
the ifland. He behaved with fuch infupportable tyranny, that mbf^ 
of the colonifts retired to Martinico ; and the few who remained 
cop.demned him to death after a formal trial. In the whoie comt 

* Of llie manner iii which thcfc perfons carried on the war ngainrt the natives, » 
pretty corricft cftlmatc may be formed from the following eiicuniftancc : a beautiful 
vovmg girl, of twelve or thirteen years of 3ge, who was taken alive, became the 
obje(fl of difinitc between two of the French officers ; each of them claiming her as 
his prize, a iliiid coming up, put an end to the contcrt by fhuoting the girl through 

f Mr. Edwards attributes this fr.le to another cnufe ; he ifavs, the Caribbccs wcie 
totally cxtindl, and that it was the great cxpcnf* which P.irquct bad been at in con- 
queiing the ifland which obliged liino to fell j:. 



of juftice that tried this mifcreant, there was only one man (called 
Archangel!) who could write. A farrier was the pcrfon who im- 
peached ; and he, inftead of the lignatures, feaied with a horfc- 
ihoe ; and Archangeli, who performed the office of clerk, wrote 
round it thefe words in French, *' Mark of Mr. de la Brie, counfel 
for the court." 

Cerrilac receiving, as fiippofed, but little profit from his capital^ 
conveyed all his rights, &:c. to the French Weft-India company ; 
the charter of which being aboliflied in 1674, the ifland became 
vefted in the crown of France. Under the various calamities to 
which this illand was fubjefted, it will not be fuppofed to have 
made much progrefs. By an account taken in 1700, there were at 
Grenada no more than two hundred and fifty-one white people, fifty- 
three free favages or mulattoes, and five hundred and twenty-five 
flaves. The ufefnl animals were reduced to fixty-four horfes and 
five hundred and fixty-nine head of horned cattle. The whole cul- 
ture confided of three plantations of fugar, and fifty-two of indigo. 

This unfavourable ftate of the affairs of Grenada was changed ini 
J 7 14. The change was owing to the flourifliing condition of Mar- 
tinico. The richefl of the fliips from that ifland were fent to the 
Spanifli coafts, and in their way touched at Grenada to take in re- 
frefiiments. The trading privateers, who undertook this navigation, 
taught the people of that ifland the value-of their foil, which only 
required cultivation. Some traders furniflied the inhabitants with 
Haves and utenfils to ere6t fugar plantations. An open account was 
eftabliflied between the two colonies. Grenada was clearing its 
debts gradually by its rich produce, and the balance was on the point 
of being clofed, when the war in 1744 interrupted the communica- 
tion between the two iflands,' and at the fame time flopped the pro- 
grefs of the fugar plantations. This lofs was fupphed by the culture 
of coffee, which was purfued during the hoftilities with all the afti- 
vity and eagernefs that iiiduftry could infpire. The peace of 1748 
revived all the labours, and opened all the former fources of wealth. 
In 1753, ^^^ population of Grenada confifted of one thoufand twa 
hundred and fixty-two white people, one hundred snd feventy-five 
free negroes, and eleven thoufand nine hundred and ninety-one 
flaves. The cattle amcHinted to two thoufand tWo hundred and 
ninety-eight horfes or mules, two thoufand four hundred and fifty-fix 
head of horned cattle, three thoufand two hundred and feventy-eight 
fteep, nine hundred and two goats, and three hundred and thirty-one 
Vol. 1V» U i hog>v 


hogs. The cultivation rofe to eighty-three fugar plantations, two 
millions feven hundred and twenty-five thoufand fix hundred coffee 
trees, one hundred and fifty thoufand three hundred cacoa trees, and 
eight hundred cotton plants. The provifions confided of five 
millions feven hundred forty thoufand four hundred and fifty 
trenches of cafl'ada, nine hundred and thirty-three thoufand five 
hundred and ninety-fix banana trees, and one hundred and forty- 
three fquares of potatoes and yams. The colony made a rapid pro- 
grefs, in proportion to the excellence of its foil j but in the courfe of 
the lafl war but one, the illand was taken by the Britifli. At this time, 
one of the mountains at the fide of St. George's harbour was flrongly 
fortified, and might have made a good defence, but furrendered 
without firing a gun; and by the treaty concluded in 1763 the 
ifland was ceded to Britain. On this ceffion, and the management 
of the colony after that event, the Abbe Raynal has the following 
remarks : *' This long train of evils [the ambition and mifmanage- 
ment of his countrymen] has thrown Grenada into the hands of the 
Englifli, who are in pofleffion of this conquefl by the treaty of 1763. 
Eut how long will they keep this colony ? Or, will it never again be 
reftored to France .'' England made not a fortunate beginning. In 
the firfl enthufiafm raifed by an acquifition, of which the highef^ 
opinion had been previoufly formed, every one was eager to pur- 
chafe eftates there ; they fold for much more than their real value. 
This caprice, by expelling old colonifts who were inured to the 
climate, fent about one million five hundred and fifty-three thoufand 
pounds out of the mother country. This imprudence was followed 
by another. The new proprietors, mifled by national pride, fub- 
iVituted new methods to thofe of their predecefl!brs ; they attempted 
to' alter the mode of living among their flavcs. The negroes, who 
from their very ignorance are more attached to their cuftoms than 
other men, 'revolted. It was found neceflary to fend out troops, and 
to filed blood : the whole colony was filled with fufpicions : the 
mafl:ers, who had laid themfelves under a neceffity of ufing violent 
methods, were afraid of being burnt or mafiacred in their own plan- 
tations : the labours declined, or were totally interrupted. Tran- 
quillity was at length reflored, and the number of flaves increafed as 
far as forty thonfand, and the produce raifed to the treble of what 
it was under the French government. The plantations were farther 
improved by the neighbourhood of a dozen of illands, called the 
Grenadines or Grcnadilloes , which are dependent on the colony. 

f They 


They are from three to eight leagues jn circumference, but do not 
atford a fingle fpring of water, one fmall one excepted ; the air is 
wholefome ; the ground, covered only with thin bulhes, has not been 
fcreened from the fun ; it exhales none of thofe noxious vapours 
which are fatal to the hulbandman. Cariacou, the only one of the 
Grenadines which the French occupied, was at firil frequented by 
turtle fifliermen ; who, in the leifure afforded them by fo cafy an 
occupation, employed themfclves in clearing the ground. In procefa 
of time, their fmall number was increafed by the acceffion of fome of 
the inhabitants of Guadaloupe, who finding that their plantations 
were deftroyed by a particular fort of ants, removed to Cariacou. 
The illand flouriflied from the liberty that was enjoyed there. The 
inhabitants coUedled about one thoufand two hundred flaves, by 
, whofe labours they made themfelves a revenue of near twenty thoufand 
pounds a year in cotton. The other Grenadines do not afford a prof* 
peft of the fame advantages, though plantations are begun there. 
Sugar has fucceeded remarkably well at Becouya, the largeft an^ 
moft fertile of thefc i Hands, which is no more than two leagues dif- 
tant from St. Vincent." 

In the year 1779, the conqueft of this ifland was accom^ 
pliflied by D'Ellaing, the French admiral, who had been pre*" 
vented from attempting it before by his eijterprife againft St. Vincent^ 
Immediately after the conqueft of St. Lucia, however, being re- 
inforced by a fquadron under M. de la Motte, he fet fail for Gre- 
nada with a fleet of twenty-fix fail of the line and twelve frigates, 
having on board ten thoufand land forces. Here he arrived on 
the fecond of July, and landed three thoufand troops, chiefly Irifh, 
being part of the brigade compofed of natives of Ireland in the fer'!- 
vice of France. Thefe were condufted by Count Dillon, who difpo-- 
fed them in fuch a manner as to furround the hill that overlooks and 
commands George's-town, together with the fort and harbour. To 
oppofe thefe, Lord M'Cartney, the governor, had onjy about one 
hundred and fifty regulars, and three hundred or four hundred arme4 
inhabitants ; but though all refiftance was evidently vain, he deter- 
mined nevcrthelefs to make an honourable and gallant defence. The 
preparations he made were fuch as induced D'Eftaign himfelf to be 
prefent at the attack ; and even with this vaft fuperiority of force, 
the firft attack on the entrenchments proved unfuccefstul. The fe- 
cond continued two hours, when the garrifon was obliged to yield 
to the immehfedifparity of numbers who aflaulted them, after having 
killed orv.ounded three lumdred of their antagonifts. Having thus 

L 1 2 made 


made themfelves mailers of the entrenchments on the hill, the French 
iurned the cannon of them towards the fort which lay under it, on 
which the governor demanded a capitulation. The terms, however, 
vi^erefo extraordinary and unprecedented, that both the governor and 
inhabitants agreed in reje£ting them, and determined rather tofurren- 
der without any conditions at all than upon thofe which appeared fo ex- 
travagant. This they did, and it muft be acknowledged, that the pro- 
tecftiwn which was afforded to the helplefs inhabitants of the town and 
their property, was fuch as reflefted the higheft honour and luftre on 
the difcipline and humanity of the conqueror's proteftions and fafe- 
guards were granted on every application ; and thus a town was fived 
from plunder which, by the ftrift rules of war, might have been given 
jjp to an exafperated foldiery. 

In the mean time Admiral Byron, who had been convoying the 
homeward bound Weft-India fleet, haftened to St. Vincent, in hopes 
of recovering it ; but being informed by the way, that a delcent had 
been made at Grenada, he changed his courfe, ho])ing that Lord 
M'Cartney would be able to hold out till his arrival. On the fixth of 
July he came in fight of tlie French f]eet, and without regarding 
D'Eftaing's fuperiority of fix fliips of the line and as many frigates, 
determined, if poflible, to force him to a clofe engagement. The 
French commander, however, was not fo confident of his own 
prowefs as to run the rilk of an escounter of this kind, and having al- 
ready achieved^ his conqueft, had no other view than to preferve it. 
His defigns were facilitated by the good condition of his fleet, which 
being more lately come out of port than that of the Britifh, failed 
fafter, fothat he was thus enabled to keep at what diftancehe pleafed. 
The engagement began at eight in the morning, when Admiral Har- 
rington with his own and two other fliips got up to the van of the 
enemy, which they attacked with the greateft fplrit. As the other 
fliips of his divifion, however, were not able to get up to his aflif- 
Itance, thefe three fliips were neceflarily obliged to encounter a vail 
fuperiority, and of confequence fuftered exceedingly. The battle 
was carried on from beginning to end in the fame unequal manner ; 
nor were the Britifli commanders, though they ul'ed their utnioft ef- 
forts fpr this purpofe. able to biing the French to a cloic engage- 
jncDt. Thus Captains CoUingwood, Edwards, and Cornwallis, flood 
the fire of the whole French fleet for fome time. Captain Fanfliaw 
of the Monmouth, a fixty-four gun fliip, threw himfelf flngly in the 
^■yay of the enemy's van; and Admiral Rowley and Captain Buchart 



fought at the fame difadvantage : fo that finding it impoflible to con- 
tinue the cngagenaent with any probability of fuccels, a general cef- 
liition of firing took place about noon. It rc-commeaced in the fanac 
manner about two in the afternoon, and lafted with different inter- 
ruptions till the evening. During this adion fome of the Britifh 
fhips had forced their way into St. George's harbour, not imagining 
that the enemy were already in pofleffion of the ifland. They were 
foon undeceived, howtever, by perceiving the French colours flying 
afliorc, and the guns and batteries firing at them. This difcoveiy put 
an end to the defign which had brought on the engagement ; and as it 
was now high time to think of providing for the lafety of the Britifh 
tranfports, which were in danger from the number of the enemy's 
frigates, the engagement was finally dilcontinued. During this ac- 
tion fome of Admiral Byron's ftiips had futfered extremely ; the Lion 
of fixty-four guns, Captain Cornwallis, was found incapable of re- 
joining the fleet, which were plying to windward, and was therefore 
obliged to bear away alone before the wind. Two other fliips lay far 
aftern in a very diftrelTed fituation, but no attempt was made to cap« 
ture them, nor did the French admiral fliow the leaft inclination to 
renew the engagement. 

Grenada was again reftored to Great-Britain at the peace of Paris ; 
it contains about eighty thoufand acres of land, of which although 
no lefs than feventy-two thoufand one hundred and forty-one acres 
paid taxes in 1776, and may therefore be fuppofed fit for cultivation, 
yet the quantity actually cultivated has never exceeded fifty thoufand 
acres. The face of the country is mountainous, but not inacceflible 
in any part, and abounds with fprings and rivulets. To the north 
and the eaft, the foil is a brick mould, the fame, or nearly the fame, 
as that of which mention has been made in the hiftory of Jamaica ; 
on the weft fide, it is a rich black mould on a fubftratum of yellovy 
clay J to the foutb, the land in general is poor, and of a reddifh hue, 
and the fame extends over a coufiderable part of the interior country. 
On the whole, however, Grenada appears to be fertile in a high de- 
gree, and by the variety, as well as the excellence of its returns, 
feems adapted to every tropical production. The exports of the 
year 1776, from Grenada and its dependencies, were fourteen mil- 
lions twelve thoufand one hundred and fifty-feven pounds of mufca- 
vado, and nine millions two hundred and feventy-three thoufand fix 
Imndred and feven pounds of clayed fugar, eight hundred and eigh- 
teen thoui'and feven hundred gaUons of rum, oiie million eight hun- 


4red and twenty-feven thoufand one hundred and fixty-fix pounds of 
coffee, four hundred and fifty-ieven thoufand feven hundred and 
nineteen pounds of cacoa, nhiety-one thoufand nine hundred and 
forty-three pounds of cotton, twenty-feven thoufand fix hundred and 
thirty-eight pounds of indigo, aiid feme fmaller articles ; the whole 
of which, orj a moderate computation, could not be worth lefs, at 
the ports of fliipping, than fix hundred thoufand pounds fterling, 
excluding freight, duties, infurance, and other charges. It deferves 
to be remembered too, that the fugarwas the produce of one hundred 
and fi:x plantations only, and that they were worked by eighteen 
thoufand two hundred and ninety-three negroes, which wa? therefore 
rather more than one hogfhead of fixtcen hundred weight from the 
labour of each negro, old and young, employed in the cultivation of 
that commodity; a prodigious return, equalled, we believe, by no 
BritiQi ifland in the Weft-Indies, St. Chnftoper's excepted. The 
exports of 1787 will be given herenfrer ; they will be found, except 
in one or two articles, to fall greatly fliort of thofe of 1776. 

This ifland is divided into fix parifijes ; St. George, St. David, St. 
Andrew, St. Patrick, St. Mark, and St. John; and its chief depen- 
dency, Cariacou, forms a feventh parifli. It is only fince the reftora- 
tion of Grenada to Great-Britain by the peace of 1783, that an ifland 
law has been obtained for the eftablifliment of a Froteftant clergy. 
This aft paffed in 1784, and provides flipends of three hundred and 
thirty pounds currency, and fixty pounds for houfe rent per annum, 
ior fiwe clergymen, viz. one for the town and parifli of St. George, 
three for the other five out pari flies of Grenada, and one for Ca- 
riacou. Befides thefe flipends, there are valuable glebe lands, which 
had been appropriated to the fupport of the Roman Catholic clergy, 
whilflthat was the efl:ablifl)ed religion of Grenada. Thele lands, ac- 
cording to an opinion of the attorney and iolicitor-geiieral of Eng- 
land, to whom a queftiou on this point was referred by the crown, 
became vefted in his Majefty as public lands, on the reftoration of 
the ifland to theBritifli government,'- and we believe have flnce been 

'* If the {Iccifion of die ntrorney-gcncrnl and fulicitcir-gcncral was founded on iul- 
tlce, and ibc government of Grcat-ErKain had a ri^^ht to Teixe tUefc InnJs and appW 
them toaditrcicnt purpofe than chat which they wcic originally intcndid, and Ijcftuwed 
for, the fame principle muft jufiify the French government in feizing the cluirch Iand% 
as public property, and applying thcni to the bcnefr. if their country ; hence it appears 
that what has been termed the moft daring- facrilc;.',c and ufurpalion when 4o"c in France, 
is fmiflioned in Great-Br«:ain by Ic-al aiitU)riry d.s an ■,\ii uf jiifticc. 

/ uniilicr'. 


kfjplie'! by the colonial legiflatviie, with the coiifent of the rrown, to 
the farther fiipport of the Protcftant church, with fome allowance 
for the benefit of the tolerated Romifli clergy of the remaining French 

The capital of Grenada, by an order of governor Melville, foot! 
after the cellion of the country to Great-Britain by the peace of 
Paris, was called St. George. By this orHinance, the Englifli names 
weie given to the fcvci-al towns and pariflies, and their French names 
forbidden to be thereafter ufed in any public afts. The French 
name of the capital was Fort Royale j it is fituated in a fpacious bay, 
on the well: or Ice fide of the ill.ind, not far from the fouth end, and 
poficflfes one of the ialcft and moii commotlious harbours for fliip- 
ping in the Englilh Weft-lndith, which has lately been fortified at a 
very great expcnfe. 

The other towns in Grenada are, properly fpeaking, inconfidera- 
ble villages or hamlets, which are generally fituated at the bays or 
lliipping places in the feveral out parities. The parifli town of Ca- 
riacou is called Hillfborough. 

Grenada has two poits of entry, with feparate eflablifhments, and 
diftinft revenue ouicers, independent of each other, viz. one at St. 
George, the capital, and one at Grenville bay, a town and harbour oo, 
the eaft or windward fide of the ifland. The former, by the 27th 
Geo. III. c. 27, is made a free port. 

It appears that the white population of Grenada and the Grena- 
dines has decreafed confiderably fince thefe iflands firft came into the 
pofleffion of the Engiifii. The number of white inhabitants, in the 
year 1771, were known to be fomewhat more than fixteen hundred ; 
in 1777, they had decreafed to thirteen hundred ; and at this time 
they are fuppofed not to exceed one thoufand, of which about two 
thirds are men able to bear arm?, and incorporated into five regi- 
ments of militia, including a company of free blacks or mulattoes at- 
tached to each. There are likewife about five hundred regular 
troops from Great-Britain, which are fupported on the Britifli eftab- 
lirliment. Befides the regular troops which are fent from Great-Bri- 
tain for the proteftion of Grenada, there are in its garrifon three 
companies of king's negroes, which came from America, where they 
ferved in three capacities, as pioneers, artificers, and light dragoons. 
In Grenada they form a company of each, and are commanded by a 
lieutenant of the regulars, having captain's rank. 



The negro flnves have alfo decreafed. By the laft returns prece- 
ding the capture of the ifland in 1779, ^^^7 were ftated at thirty-five 
thoufand, of which five thoufand were in Cariacoii, and the fmaller 
iflands. In 1785 they amounted to no more than twenty-three thou- 
fand nine hundred and twenty-fix in the whole. The decreafe was 
owing partly to the want of any regular fupply during the French 
government, and partly to the numbers carried from the ifland by 
the French inhabitants, both before and after the peace. 

The free people of colour amounted in 1787, to one thou- 
fand one hundred and fifteen. To prevent the too great increafe 
of this mixed race, every manumiffion is," by an a6l of this ifland, 
charged with a fine of one hundred pounds currency, payable 
into the public treafury. But this law has neither operated as a pro- 
duftive fund, nor as a prohibition ; for it is lifually evaded by execu- 
ting and recording ads of manumiffion in fome other ifland or go- 
vernment where there is no fuch law. The evidence of all free co- 
loured people, whether born free or manumitted, is received in the 
courts of this ifland, on their producing fufficient proof of their free- 
dom ; and fuch free people are tried on criminal charges in the fame 
manner as whites, without dift:in61ion of colour. They are alfo al- 
lowed to pofll'fs and enjoy lands and tenements to any amount, pro- 
vided they are native-born fubjefts or capitulants, and not aliens. 

The governor, by virtue of his office, is chancellor, ordinary, and 
vice-admiral, and prefides folely in the courts of chancery and ordi- 
nary, as in Jamaica. His fa'ary is three thoufand two hundred 
pounds currency per annum,* which is railed by a poll tax on all 
Haves ; and it is the praftice in Grenada to pafs a falary bill on the 
arrival of every new governor, to continue during his government. 
In all cafes of abfence beyond twelve months, the falary ceafes and 

The council of Grenada confifts of twelve members, and the af-, 
fembly of twenty-fix. The powers, privileges and funftions of both 
thefe branches of the legiflature are the fame, and exercifed precifely 
in the fame manner as thofe of the council and aflembly in Jamaica. 
A freehold or life ellate, of fifty acres, is a qualification to fit as re- 
prefentatives for the pariflies, and a freehold, or life eftate in fifty 
pounds houfe rent in St. George, qualifies d reprefentative for the 

* The cunency of Grenada, or rate of cxUiange, is commonly futy-fivc per cent, 
worfc thaa flerling. 



town. An eflate of ten acres in fee, or for life, or a rent of ten 
pounds in any of the out towns, gives a vote for the reprefentatives of 
«ach parifti refpe6lively ; and a rent of twenty pounds per ann. illiiing 
cut of any freehold or life eftatc in the tou-n of St. George, gives a 
vote for the reprefentative for the town. 

The law courts in Grenada, befides thofe of chancery and oi'di- 
nary, are the eourt cjf grand feffions of the peace, held twice a j'c.u, 
viz. in March and September. In this court the firfl perfou named 
in the commiffion of the peace prelides, who is ufually the prefKlont 
■or fenior in council. — The court of common pleas : this court con- 
lifts of one chief and four affillant jullices, whofe coir.miffions are 
during pleafure. The chief juftice is ufuaily appointed in England, a 
profeflional man, and receives a flilary of fix hundred pounds per 
annum. The four aliiftant juftices are ufually appoir.ted by the go- 
vernor from among the gentlemen of thj illand, and aft without a fa- 
lary. — The court of exchequer : the barons of this court are com- 
miffioned in like manner as in the court of common pleas ; but this 
court is lately grown into difufe. — The court of admiralty for trial of 
:dl prize caufes of capture from enemies in war, and of revenue fei- 
zure in peace or war. There is one judge of admiralty and one 
furrogate. — The governor and council compofe a court of error, 
as in Jamaica, for trying all appeals of error from the court of com- 
mon pleas. 

We have already noticed that there are feveral fmall iflands fub- 
jeft to the laws enabled in Grenada ; they each eleft a perlbn to 
reprefent them in the general aflembly, which is always held in St. 
George's. As none of the Grenadines have a harbour fit for large 
velfels, the produce of them is conveyed in fmall veiTels to St. 
George's, from whence it is exported to the different places of Eu- 
rope, Africa, America, &c. From the number of veflels that arrive 
there yearly from different places, and from its being the feat of the 
legiflature, it has become {"o populous, that two nevvfpai[>er6 are pub- 
liflied in it. On occalion of the late profpeft of a war with Spain, an 
a6t was palfed here in February 1790, obliging every gentleman to 
give in upon oath the value of his eftate, and the number of blacks 
upon it, in order that the general aflembly might alcertain the num- 
ber of flaves each {liould fend to work upon the fortifications on 
Richmond hill, near St. George's. 

We fliall clofe our account of this ifland with a view of its cxpprts 
in 1787, with an account of its value in the Britilli market. 

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( 20 ) 


J. HIS 'ifiand is fituated between 6i° and 62° weft longitude, and 
15° and 16° north latitude, is about twenty-nine miles long, and lix- 
teen broad ; it was fo named by Columbus, on account ol" its be- 
ing difcovered on a Sunday. Prior to the year 1759, its hiftory is a 
hiere blank ; at the above period it was taken by Great-Britain 
from France, and afterwards confirmed to her at the peace in 

When Great-Britain took pofleffion of this ifland, many French- 
men had eftabliflied plantations of coffee in various parts thereof, and 
thefe were fecured in their poireffions by the Britifh government, on 
condition of taking the oaths of allegiance, and paying a quit rent of 
two fliillings per acre per ann. provided each plantation did not con- 
fifl of more than three hundred acres. The reft of the cultivable 
lands were fold by auftion under the iiifpeftion of commiffioners ap- 
pointed for that purpofe : ninety-fix thoufand three hundred and 
forty-four acres were thus difpofed of, which yielded to the Britifli 
government three hundred and twelve thoufand and ninety-two pounds 
eleven fliillings and one penny flerling* Thefe purchafes made by 
Britifti fubjedts do not appear to have anfwered the expectation of the 
buyers, for the French inhabitants are ftill the moff numerous, and 
poflefs the moll valuable coffee plantations in the ifland, the pro- 
duce of which has hitherto been found its moil: important ftaple. 

At the commencement of the unjuft and dellruCtive war againft the 
American colonies by Great-Britain, the ifland of Dominica was in a 
very flourifliing ftate. Rofeau, its capital, had been declared a free 
port by a£t of parliament, and was reforted to by trading veflels from 
mofl part of the foreign Wefl:-Indies, as well as from America. The 
French an ! Spaniards purchafed great numbers of negroes there for 
the fupply of their fettlements, togeiher with large quantities of the 
manufaftures of Great-Britain, payment for the greater part of which 
was made in bullion, indigo, and cotton, and completed in mules 
sind cattle, articles of prime neceflity to the planter. Thus the ifland, 

M m z though 


though certainly not fo fertile as fome others, was rapidly advancirrg 
to importance. 

The fitaation of this ifland is between the French'ifland of Guada- 
loupe and Martinico, with fafe and commodious roads and harbours 
for privateers, rendered its defence an obje£l of the utmoft impor- 
tance to Great-Britain ; but her defpotic principles, folly, and fran- 
tic rage againft her colonies on the continent, caufed a total negleft 
of her Weft-India poffeffions. . Pofterity will fcarcely believe that the 
regular force allotted to this ifland, the beft adapted of all others for 
the defence of the Carribbean fea, and the dillreffing of the 
Jrench colonies, confided only of fix officers and ninety-four pri- 
vates. In 1778, the Marquis de Bouille, the governor of Marti- 
nico, made a defcent with two thoufand men ; all refiftance being 
vain, the only thing the garrifon could do was to procure as favoura- 
ble terms of capitulation as polPible. Thefe were granted v/ith fuch 
readinefs as did great honour to the character of this officer, the inha- 
bitants experiencing no kind of change except that of transferring their 
obedience from Britain to France, being; left unmolefted in the enjoy- 
ment of all their rights, both civil and religious. The capitulation- 
was flriaiy obferved by the Marquis, no plunder or irregularity 
being allowed, and a pecuniary gratification being diftributed among 
the foldiers and volunteers who accompanied him in the expedition. 
An hundred and fixty-four pieces of excellent cannon, and twenty- 
four brafs mortars, belides a large quantity of military flores, were 
found in the place, infomuch that the French themfelves exprefTed 
their furprife at finding fo few hands to make ufe of them. The 
Marquis, however, took care to fupply this defeft, by leaving a 
garrifon of one thoufand five hundred of the beft men he had with 

Though the conduft of Bouille in the above expedition was fuch as 
Jn every partt hereof to refied honour on him as a foldier and a man, 
yet it was far different with refpcft to the Marquis Duchilleau, whom 
Bouille appointed commander in chief in Dominica. During five 
years and three months, the period this illand was fubjeft to the 
French monarchy, and under his adminiftration, it was a prey to 
the moft villainous defpotilm and wanton exertion of power. The 
principles of the late court of Verfailles difcovercd then)fclves in all 
their hcllifli forms. The linglifli inhabitants were ftrijjped of their 
arms, and lorbid to affemble in any greater number than two in a 

3 P^ace, 


place, under the pcnalt}' of militaiy execution ; and the ccntinels were 
ordtred to flioot them if they paflcd in greater numbers. No lights 
were to be fecn in their houfes after nine o'clock in the evening, nor 
was an EngliQi perfon to prefume to walk the ftreets on any account 
whatever after thiit period without a lanthorn and candle. Mr. 
Robert How, an Englifu merchant, and owner of a fliip then in the 
harbour, attempting to go on board after that time, was fliot dead in 
the attempt, and the centinel who did the a£t, promoted for having, 
as the governor exprelTedit, done his duty. 

The town of Rofeau was fet on fue by the French foldiery, which 
if not done by the governor's orders, was however fandioned by him, 
for during the whole night on which the melancholy event took 
place, he was prefent like another Nero, diverting himfelf with the 
fcene, and actually forbid his foldiers to affift in extinguifliing the 
flames, fave only in houfes belonging to the French inhabitants, but 
he permitted, if he did not pofitively encourage, his men to plunder 
the Englifli inhabitants in the midft of their diilrefs. * 

The accumulated diftrefles of the inhabitants ruined a nurpiber of 
the planters, who threw up their plantations, and abandoned them. 
In 1783 it was again rellored to Great-Britain, and the inhabitants 
reftored to the enjoyment of their former privileges. 

This ifland is divided into ten pariflies, the town of Rofeau, 
which contains only five hundred houfes, exclufive of the cottages of 
the negroes, is the capital ; it is fituated on a point of land on the fouth- 
vveft fide of the ifland, which forms Woodbridge's and Charlotte 
Ville bays. Tiie ifland contains many high rugged juountains, feve- 
ral of which contain volcanoes, which frequently difcharge burning 
fulphur, and from fome of the mountains hot fprings of water iflue. 
Between the mountains are many fertile vallie?, well watered, there 
being at leaft thirty fine rivers, befides rivulets in the countiv. 

There are not, however, at this time, moie than fifty fijgar planta- 
tions inwork, and one ycarwith another they do not produce more thaa 
from two to three thonfand hogflicads per annum. There are more 
than two hundred coffee plantations, which feem to anAyer well, as 
in fome years they have produced twenty-fix thoufand feven hu.'idred 
and eighty-five hundred weight. Cacoa, indigo and ginger are alfo 
cultivated, but in a very fmall degree, for the chief of thofe in the 
lift of exports are obtained from South-America, under the fan(fl:ion 
of the free port law. 



The number of inhabitants, according to the return of 1788, is 
as follows : white inhabitants of all foi ts, one thoufand two hundred 
and thirty-fix j free negroes, &c. four hundred and forty-five ; 
flaves, fourteen thoufand nine hundred and fixty-feven ; and about 
twenty or thirry families of Caribbees. We fhall clofe tliis account 
with the following table of exports, &cc. 



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( 272 ) 


J. HIS iiland contains about eighty-four thoufand acres, and is on 
the whole well watered ; it is, however, ia general mountainous and nig- 
ged, but the intermediate vallies are exceeding fertile. The country 
held and culriyated by the Britifh, at prefent, does not exceed twenty- 
three thoufand i^ix hundred and nve acres, all the reft of the iiland 
being held hj the Caribbees, or incapable of cultivation. 

The Spaniards, according to Dr. Campbell, beftovved the name of 
St. Vincent on this iiland, on account of its being dlfcovered on a day 
devoted to that Saint in their calendar ; but it does not appear that 
they ever got polTeffion of it on account of the number of Indians 
who inhabited it ; but neither the natural flrcngth of the ifland, nor 
their numbers, could ultimately exempt them from European hoftl- 

When the Englifli and French, who for fome years had been ra- 
vaging the Windward iflands, began to give fome confiftence to their 
fettlements, in the year x65o they agreed that Dominica and St. Vin- 
cent fliould be left to the Caribs as their property. Some of thefe 
favages, who till then had been difperfed, retired into U'se former, 
and the greater part into the latter. There thefe mild and moderate 
men, lovers of peace and filence, lived in woods, in fcattered families, 
tinder the guidance of an old man, whom his age alone had advan- 
ced to the dignity of ruler. The dominion paired fucceffively into 
every familv, where the oldeft always became king, that is to fay, 
the guidti and father of the nation. Thefe ignorant favages were 
flill unactpiainted with thc/ul^lime art of fubduing and governing men 
by force of arms ; of murdering the inhabitants of a country to get 
poflefljon of their lands ; of granting to the conquerors the property, 
and to the concpi-red the labours of the conquered country ; and in 
procefs of rime, of depriving both of the rights and the fruit of their 
toil by arbitrary taMcs. 


The population of thefe children of nature was fiuldenly augmented 
by a race of Africans, whofe origin was never pofitively afcei taitied.- 
It is faid tliat a fliip carrying negroes for fale, foundered on the 
eoaflof St. Vincent, and the flaves who efcaped the wreck, were re- 
ceived as brethren by the favages. Otliers pretend that thefe negroes 
were deferters, who ran away from the plantations of the neighbour- 
ing colonies. A third tradition fays, that this foreign race comes 
from the blacks whom the Caribs took from the Spaniards in the fir^ 
wars between thofe Europeans and the Indians. If we may credic 
Du Tertre, the moft ancient hiftorian who has written an accdunt of 
the Antilles, thefe terrible favages who were fo inveterate ag:unft 
their mailers, fpared the captive ilaves, brought them home, and 
reftored them to liberty that they might enjoy life, that is, the common 
bleflings of nature, which no man has a right to withhold from any 
of his fcilo.v creatures. 

Their kindnefs did not flop here ; for by whatever chance thefe 
flrangers v.ere brought into the ifland, the proprietors of it gave 
them their daughters in marriage, and the race that fprang from this 
mixture were called black Caribs : they have preferved more of the 
primitive colour of their fathers, than of the lighter hue of their mo- 
thers. The red dribs are of a low ftature j the black Caribs tall 
and flout, and this doubly-favage race fpeaks with a vehemence that 
feems to refemble anger. 

In procefs uf time^ however, fome differences arofe bet*('een the 
two nations ; the people of Martinico perceiving this, refolved to 
take advantage of their divilions, and raife themfelveson the ruins of 
both parties. Their pretence was, that the black Caribs gave. flicker 
to the flaves who deferred from the French iflands. Impoflure is al- 
ways productive of injuftice. Thofe who were fjtlfely accufed, were 
afterwards attacked without reafon ; but the fmallnefs of the nurh- 
bersfent out againfl them, the jealoufy of thofe who were :i; pointed 
to command the expedition, the defeftion of the red Caribs, who 
rcfufed to fupply fuch dangerous allies with any of the fuccours they 
had promifed them to a6l againfl their rivals, the difficulty of procu- 
ring fubfiflence, the impofTibility of coming up with enemies who 
kept themielves concealed in woods and rnountains ; ail thefe circum ■ 
flanges confpired to difconcert this ralh and violent enterprifc. It 
was obliged to be given up after the iofs of many valuable lives ; but 
the triumph the favages obtained, did not prev^t them from fuing for 
peace as fupplicants. They even invited the French to come and live 

Vol. IV. Nn with 


with them, fweailng fincere friendfhip and inviolable concord. This 
propofal was agreed to, and the next year, 17 19, majiy of the inhabi- 
tants of Martinico removed to St. Vincent. 

The firft who came thither fettled peaceably, not only with the 
confent, but by the alTiuance of the red Caribs. This fuccefs in- 
duced others to follow their example ; but thefe, whether frem jea- 
Icrufy, or fome other motive, taught the favages a fatal fecret ; that 
people, who knew of no property but the fruits of the earth, becaufe 
they are the reward of labour, learnt with aftonifliment that they 
could Tell the earth itfelf, which they had always looked upon as be- 
longing to mankind in gcnwal. This knowledge induced them to 
meafure and fix boundaries, and from that inftant peace and happinefs 
were baniflied from their iflarid : the partition of lands occalioned di- 
vifions amongfl them. The following were thecaufes of the revolution 
produced by the fyflem of ufurpation. 

When the French came to St. Vincent, they brought fiaves along 
with them to clear and till the ground. The black Caribs, fhocked 
at the thought of refembling men who were degraded by flavery, and 
fearing that fome time or other their colour, which betrayed their 
origin, might be made a pretence for enflaving them, took refuge in 
the thickeft part of the foreft. In this fituation, in order to imprint an 
indelible mark of diflinftion upon their tribe, that might be a per- 
petual token of their independence, they flattened the foreheads of all 
their children as foon as they were born. The men and women 
whofe heads could not bend to this flrange fliape, dared no longer 
appear in public without this vifible fign of freedom. The next ge- 
neration appeared as a new race j the flat-headed Caribs, who were 
nearly of the fame age, tall proper men, hardy and fierce, came and 
cre£ted huts by the fea fide. 

They no fooner knew the price which the Europeans fet upon the 
lands they inhabited, than they claimed a fliare with the other iflan- 
ders. This rifing fpiritof covetoufnefs was at firft appeafcd by fome 
prefents of brandy and a few iabres ; but not content with thefe, thejr 
foon dematided fire arms, as the red Caribs had ; and at laft they 
were defirous of having their fliare in all future fales of land, and 
Irkewife iu the produce of pafi: fa'es. Provoked at being denied a 
part in this brotherly rei>artition, they formed into a feparate tribe, 
fwoie nevermore to r.flbclate with the red Caribs, chofc a chief of 
their own, and declaied war. 

3 Tlic 


The nurabgr of the combatants might be equal, but their ftrength 
was not fo. The black Caribs had every advantage over the red, 
that induftrv, valour, ;>.nd boldnefs, mull: foun accjuire over a weak 
habit and a timorous diipofition. But the (pint of equity, which is 
feldom deficient in favages, made the conqueror conient to fliare with 
the vanquiflaed all the territory lying to the leeward. Jt was the only 
one which both parties were deiiroasof poirelfing, becaufe there they 
were fure of receiving prefents from the French. 

The black Caribs gained nothing by the agreement whicja th<y 
themfelves had drawn up. The new planters wlio came to the illand, 
always landed and lettled near the red Qvibs, where the coaft was 
moft acceffible. This preference roufed that enmity which was but 
jU extinguiflied ; the war broke out again ; the red Caribs, who 
were always beaten, retired to windward of the ifland ; many took 
to their canoes and went over to the continent, or to Tobago, and the 
few that remained lived fcparate from tlie blacks. 

The black Caribs, conquerors and mafters of all the leeward coaft, 
required of the Europeans that they ftiould again buy the lands they^^ 
had already purchafed. A Frenchmaa .attempted to fliew the deed of 
his purchale of fome land which he had bought of a red Carib ; *' I 
know not," fays a black Carib, " what thy paper fays, but read what 
is written on my arrow ; there you may lee, in characters which do 
not lie, that if you do not give me what I demand, I will go and 
burn your houfe to night." In this manner did a people who had 
not learnt to read, argue with thofe who derived fuch confequence 
from knowing how to write. They made ufe of the right of force, with 
as much alfurance and as little remorfe as if they had been acquainted 
with divine, political and civil right. 

Time,^which brings on a change of meafures with a change of inte- 
terefls, put an end to thefe difturbances. T.'he French became in 
their turn the ftrongeft ; they no longer fpent their time in breeding 
poultry, and cultivating vegetables, caflava, maize, and tobacco, in 
order to fell them at Martinico. In lefs than twenty years more in)- 
portant cultures employed eight hundred white men and three thou- 
fand blacks. Sui:h was the fituation of St. Vincent when it fell into 
the hands of the Englifli, and was fecured to them by the treaty 
of 1763. 

Jt was in the weftern part of the ifland that the French had begun 
the culture of cacoa and of cotton, and had made confiderable ad- 
vances ip th^t of coffee. The conquerors formed there fome fugar 

N n ij pUn- 


plantntions ; the impoflibility of multiplying them upon an imevea 
jloil, which is full of ravines, made them defirous of occupying the 
plains towards the eali. The favages who had taken refuge there, 
lelufed to quit them, and recourfe was had to arms tq compel then; 
to it. The reliftapce which they oppofed to the thunders of Euro- 
pean tyr.nny, was not, and could not poflibly be maintained with- 
out great djiiiciilty. 

An officer was meafuring out the ground which had jull beea 
f'lven polTeffion of, when the detachment that accompatjied him was 
unexpedly attacked, and almofl totally deftroyed on the 25th of 
March, 1775. ^' ^'^^ generally believed that the unfortunate peifons 
who had juft been deprived of their poireffions, vvere the authors of 
this violence, and the troops put themfelves in motion, and it was 
determined totally to eradicate and deftroythem. 

Fortunately it was determined in time that the Caribs were innor 
pent, that they had taken or malfacred fever^l fugitive flaves who had 
been guilty offuch cruelties, and that they had fwori) not to flop till 
they had purged the ifland of thofe vagabonds, vvhofe enormities 
were often imputed to them. In order to confirm the favages in this 
refolution, by allurement of rewards, the legiflative body pafled a 
bill to infure a gratuity of five moides, or one hundred and twenty 
livres, to any or e who fliouid bring the head of 3 negro, who ihould 
have deierted within three months. 

On the 19th of June, 1 779, St. Vincent's fliared the fate of many 
other Britifla poiTeffions in the Weft-Indies, being taken by a fmall 
body of French troops from Martinico, commanded by a lieutenant 
in the navy. The black Caribbees, however, joined the foe, and 
the ifland furrendcred without a ftriiggle. The tprms of capitulation 
were eafy, and it was again reftored in 1783 to Great-Britain ; at 
that time it contained fixty-one fugar eftates, five hundred acres in 
coffee, two hundred in caeca, four hundred in cotton, fifty in indigo, 
and five hundred in tobacco, befides the land appropriated to the 
raifing plantains, yams, maize, &:c. All the reft, except the fmall 
fpots cultivated by the native Caribbees, retained its native woods, as 
it docs at this time. 

The Britifli territory in this ifland is divided into five, pariflies, of 
which only one was ever furniflied with a church, which was blown 
down in 17S0. Kingfton is the capital of the ifland, and the feat of 
government. There are befides three other inconfiderable villages, 
tailed ipivns, but which confift each only of ;i few houfes. The gor 



vemment of St. Vincent is the fame as that of Grenada ; the council 
confifts of twelve, av.A the aflembly of feventeen. The governor has 
two thuufand pounds fteiiing per ann. half of which is paid by the 
exchequer of Great-Britain, and the other half raifed within the 

The mihtary force is a regiment of infantry, and a company of ar- 
tillery, fent from England, and a black corps raifed in the country, 
but placed on the Rritifli eftablifliment, and provided for accordingly : 
there are befides two regiments of militia, which ferve without pay 
of any kind. 

The number of inhabitants, according to the laft return made to go- 
vernment, was ons thoufand four hundred and fifty whites, and eleven 
thoufand eiglit hundred and fifty-three blacks, flaves.* 

We fliall clofe this account as of the other iflands, with a table of 
^exports, &c. but it muft be reniarked, (hat in this table is compre- 
hended the produce of feveral fmall iflands dependent on the St. Vin- 
cent government. Thefe iflands are Bequia, Union, Canouane, 
Murtique, Petit Martinique, Petit St. Viucent, Maillerau, and Bal- 
Jefcau ; the whole containing near ten thoufand acres, but the four 
Jaft only produce a little cotton, 

■'■■ Of thgfe pegroes there r,re on the dependent iflands alpouc fixteen JjundreiL 




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( 279 ) 



EVIS lies about feven leagues north of Montferrat, and is fe>^ 
parated from St. Chriftopher's by a narrow channel : it makes a 
beautiful appearance from the fea, being a large conical mountain 
covered with fine trees, of an eafy afcent on every fide, and entirely 
cultivated. The circumference is about twenty-one miles, with a 
conliderable tradl of level ground all around. The r^'mate in the 
lower part is reckoned to be warmer than Barbadoes, but it is more 
temperate towards the fummit. The foil is very fine in the lower 
part, but grows coarfer as we afccnd. The produftions are nearly 
the fame with thofe of St. Chriftopher's, and the average quantity 
of fugar is four thoufand hogflieads of fixteen hundred weight each. 
The ifland is divided into five parifhes, and it has three pretty good 
roads or bays, with fmall towns in their vicinity ; Charlefton, the 
feat of government, Moreton- bay, and Newcaftle. This pleafant 
ifland was fettled under the aufpices of Sir Thomas Warner from 
St. Chriftopher's, in the year 1628. His fucceflbr, Governor Lake, 
was confidered as the Solon of this little country, in which he dif- 
pofed of every thing with fuch prudence, wifdom and juftice, as pro- 
cured him an high i-eputation with the French as well as Englifli. 
In the Dutch war they met with fome difturbance from the French, 
but by being covered by an Englifli fquadron, the enemy were 
obliged to defiil from their intended invafion, after a fmart engage- 
ment in fight of the ifland. Sir William Stapleton fometimes re- 
lided here, and Sir Nathaniel Johnfon conftantly, at which time the 
inhabitants of Nevis were computed at thirty thoufand. In the war- 
immediately after the revolution they exerted themfelves gallantly, 
and had two regiments of three hundred m«n each. In that of 
Queen Anne they behaved equally well, though they were lefs for- 
tunate ; for the French landing with a fuperior force, and having in- 
veigled moft of their flaves, they were forced to capitulate. About 
four thoufand of thefe flaves the French carried away and fold to the 
Spaniards, xq v/ork iu iheir mines. The parliament, after making 



due inquiry into the lofTes they had fuftained, voted thera abouf a 
third part of the fum in which they had fufFered. Thcfe lofTes by 
war, an epidemic difeafe, and, repeated hurricanes, exceedingly di- 
miniflied the number of the pe^[.Ie. They now, according to Mr. 
Edwards, do not exceed fixteen hundred whites and ten thonfand 
blacks. All the white men, not exempt by age and other infirmities, 
are formed into a militia for its defence, from which there is a troop 
of fifty horfe well mounted ; but they have no troops on the Britifli 
eftablifliment. The principal fortification is at Charlefton, and is 
called Charles fort, the governor of which is appointed by the crown, 
and paid by the inhabitants. There is here a lieutenant-governor, 
with a council of rnembers, and an aflembly compofed of three 
members from each of the five pariflies into which the ifland is di- 
vided. The. adminiftering of juftice is under a chief juflice and 
two alfiftant judges. The commodities are chiefly cotton and fugar ; 
and about twenty fail of fliips are annually employed in this trade. 


( 28t ) 



.ONTSERRAT is a very fmall but very pleafant ifland, fo 
called by Columbus from its refemblance to the famous mountain 
near Barcelona in Catalonia, It lies in weft longitude 6i<' o', north 
latitude i6° 15', having Antigua to the north-eaft, St. Chriftopher's 
and Nevis to the north-weft, and Cuadaloupe lying fouth fouth- 
eaft at the dlftance of about nine leagues. In ita figure it is nearly 
round, about nine miles in extent every way, tvventy-feven in cir- 
pumference, and is fuppofed to contain about forty or fifty thoufand 
acres. The climate is warm, but lefs fo than in Antigua, and is 
efteemed very healthy. The foil is mountainous, but with pleafant 
valleys, rich and fertile, between them ; the hills are covered with 
cedars and other fine trees. Here are all the animals as well as vegeta- 
bles and fruits, that are to be found in the other iflands, and not at 
all inferior to them in quality. The inhabitants raifed formerly a 
confiderable quantity of indigo, which was none of the beft, but 
which they cut four times a year. The prefent produ£t is cotton, 
rum and fugar. There is no good harbour, but three tolerable 
roads, at Plymouth, Old harbour, and Ker's bay, where they fliip 
the produce of the illand. Public affairs are adminiftered here as in 
the other ifles, by a lieutenant-governor, a council of fix, and an 
affcmbl}-, compoled of no more than eight members, two from each 
of the four diftrids into which it is divided. Its civil hiftory con- 
tains nothing particular except its invafion by the French in 1712, 
and its capture by them again in the late war, at the conclufion of 
which it was reftored to Great-Britain. The wonderful effefts of 
induftry and experience, in meliorating the gifts of Nature, have 
been no where more confpicuous than in thefe iflands, and particu- 
larly in this, by gradually improving their produce, more efpecially 
of late years, fince the art of planting has been reduced to a regular 
fyftem, and almoll all the dcfetfts of foil fo thoroughly removed by 
proper management and manure, that, except from the failure of 
feafons, or the want of hands, there is feldom any fear of a crop. 
Vol. IV. O o As 


As far back as 1770, there were exported from this ifland to 
Great-Britain ene hundred and fixty-feven bags of cotton, feven 
hundred and forty hogflieads of rum ; to Ireland one hundred and 
thirty-three ditto, four thoufand three hundred and thirty-eight hogf- 
heads, two hundred and thirty-two tierces, two hundred and two 
barrels of fugar ; the whole valued at eighty-nine thoufand nine 
hundred and feven poinds : and exports to North-America valued 
at twelve thoufand fix hundred and thirty-three pounds. There are 
a few fliips employed in trading to this ifland from London and from 
Briflol, and the average of its trade will be feen in the tables an- 
nexed. As to the number of inhabitants, according to the mofl 
probable accounts, they confift of between twelve and fourteen hun- 
dred whites, and about ten thouf&nd negroes, though f(jnie fay not 
fo many, 


( ^83 ) 



► ARBUDA, which belongs entirely to the Codrington family, and 
the circumference of which is fix or feven leagues, hath dangerous 
coafts. It is, perhaps, the moft even of all the American iflands. 
The trees which cover it are weak, and not very high, becaufc 
there are never more than fix or feven inches of earth upon a layer 
of lime-ftone. Nature hath placed great plenty of turtles here ; and 
caprice hath occafioned the fending thither of deer and feveral kinds 
ef game ; chance hath filled the woods with pintados and other fowls, 
efcaped from the veflels after fome fliipwreck. Upon this foil are 
fed oxen, horfes and mules, for the labours of the neighbouring fet- 
tlements. No other culture is known there, except that of the kind 
of com which is neceflary for the feeding of the numerous herds ia 
thofe feafons when the pafture fails. Its population is reduced to 
three hundred and fifty flaves, and to the fmall number of free men 
who are appointed to overlook them; This private property pays 
no tribute to the nation, though it be fubjedl to the tribunals of An- 
tigua. The air here is veiy pure and very wholefome. Formerly, 
the fickly people of the other Englifli iflands went to breathe it, in 
order to flop the progrefs of their difeafes, or to recover their 
llrength. This cuftom hath ceafed, fince fome of them indulged 
themfelves in parties of deftruftive chace. 

Mufl men then be fufFered to perifli, in order that animals fliould 
be preferved ? How is it polTible, that fo atrocious a cuftom, which 
draws down the imprecation of almofl all Europe upon the fove- 
reigns and upon the lords of its countries, fliould be fuffered, and 
fliould even be efl;abliflied beyond the feas ? We have aflved this 
queftion, and we have been anfwered, that the ifland belonged to 
the Codringtons, and that they had a right to difpofe of their pro- 
perty at their pleafure. We now afk, whether this right of pro- 
pert)', which is undoubtedly facred, hath not its limits ? Whether 
this right, in a variety of circumftances, be not facri£ced to public 
good ? Whether the man who is in pofleffion of a fountain can refufe 

O o z water 


water to him who is dying with thirft? Whether any of the Cod- 
rington family would partake of one of thofe precious pintados, 
that had coft his countryman or his fellow-creature his life ? Whether 
the man who fliould be convicted of having fufFered a fick perfoa 
to die at his door, would be fufficiently puniflied by the general 
execration ? And whether he would not deferve to be dragged before 
the tribunals of judice as an afTalfm ? 

Anguilla is feven or eight leagues in length, and is very unequal 
in its breadth, which never exceeds two leagues. Neither moun- 
tains, nor woods, nor rivers, are found upon it, and its foil is nothing 
more than chalk. 

Some wandering Engliflnnen fettled upon this porous and friable 
K)ck towards the year 1650. After an obflinate labour,, tfeey at 
length fucceeded in obtaining from this kind of turf a little cotton^ 
a fmall quantity of millet feed, and fome potatoes. Six veins of 
vegetating earth, v;hich were in procefs of time difcorered, received 
fugar-canes, which,, in the befl: harveft, yield no more than fifty 
thoufand weight of fugar, and fometimes only five or fix thoufand. 
Whatever elfe comes out of the colony hath been introduced into itr 
clandeftinely from Santa Cruz, where the inhabitants of Anguilla 
have formed feveral plantations. 

In feafons of drought, which are but too freqilent, the ifland hath- 
RO other refource but in a lake, the fait of which is fold to the people 
of New-England; and in the faleof flieep and goats, which thrive 
better in this dry climate, and upon thefe arid plains, than in the reft 
©f America. 

Anguilla reckons no more than two hundred free inhabitants, and 
five hundred flaves : neverthelefs it hath an aflfembly of its own, and 
even a chief, who is always chofen by the inhabitants, and confirmed 
by the governor of Antigua. A foreigner, who fliould be fent to 
govern this feeble fettlement, would infallibly ba driven away, by 
men who have prefervcd fomething of the independent manners, 
and of the rather favage chara6Ver of their ancellors. 

The coaft of this ifland affords but two harbours, and even in 
thefe very fmall veflels only can anchor : they are both defended by 
four pieces of cannon, which, for half a century paft, have been, en* 
tirely unfit for fervice.. 


( 235 ) 


X HIS clufter of iflands lies almoft in the form of a fliepherd's 
crook, in weft longitude 6^"^, north latitude 32° 30', between two 
and three hundred leagues diftant trom the neareft place of the con- 
tinent of America, or of any of the other Weft-India iflands. The 
whole number of the Bermudas iflands is faid to be about four hun- 
dred, but very few of them are habitable. The principal is St. 
George's, which is not above fixteen miles long, and three at moft 
m breadth. It isiiniverfaliy agreed, that the nature of this and the 
other Bermudas iflands has undergone a furprifing alteration for the 
worfe, fince they were fir ft difcovered j the air being much more in- 
clement, and the foil much more barren than formerly : this is af- 
cribed to the cutting down thofe fine fpreading cedar trees for whicb 
the iflands were famous, and which flieltered them from the biafts 
of the north wind, at the fame time that it protei^d the under- 
growth of the. delicate plants and herbs. In Ihort, the Summer 
iflands are now far from being defirable fpots ; and their natural 
productions are but juft fuflicient for the fupport of the inhabitants^ 
who chiefly, for that reafon perhaps, are temperate and lively even 
to a proverb. At firft tobacco was raifed upon thefe iflands, but 
being of a worfe quality than that growing on the continent, the 
trade is now almofl: at aii end. Large quantities of ambergris were 
alfo originally found upon the coafts, and afforded a valuable com- 
merce ; but that trade is alfo reduced^ as Hkewife their whale trade, 
though the perquifites upon the latter form part of the governor's 
revenue, he having ten pounds for every whale that is caught. The 
Bermudas iflands, however, might ftiH produce fonrte valuable com- 
modities, were they properly cultivated. There is here found, 
about three or four feet below the furface, a white chalk ftone which 
is eafily chifelled, and is exported for building gentlemen's houfes 
in the Weft-Indies. Their palmetto leaves, if properly roanufac- 
4 tufed, 


tured, might turn to excellent account in making women's hats ; and 
their oranges are ftill valuable. Their foil is alfo faid to be excellent 
for the cultivation of vines, and it has been thought that filk and 
cochineal might be produced ; but none of thefe things have yet 
been attempted. The chief refource of the inhabitants for fubfift* 
ence is in the remains of their cedar-wood, of which they fabricate 
fmall floops, with the affiftance of the New-England pine, and fell 
many of them to the American colonies, where they are much ad- 
luired. Their turtle-catching trade is alfo of fervice ; and they are 
ilill able to rear great variety of tame-fowl, and have wild ones 
abounding in vaft plenty. All the attempts to eftabliihi a regular 
whale fifliery on thefe iilands have hitherto proved unfuccefsful ; 
they have no cattle, and even the black hog breed, which was pro- 
bably left by the Spaniards, is greatly decreafed. The water on the 
iflands, except that which falls from the clouds, is brackifh ; and at 
prefent the fame difeafes reign there as in the Caribbee iflands. They 
have feldom any fnow, or even much rain ; but when it does fall, it 
is generally with great violence, and the north or north-eaft wind 
renders the air very cold. The ftorms generally come with the 
new moon ; and if there is a halo or circle about it, it is a fure fign 
of a tempeft, which is generally attended with dreadful thunder and 
lightning. The inhabited parts of the Bermudas iflands are divided 
into nine diflrids, called tribes, i. St. George. 2. Hamilton. 3. 
Ireland. 4. Devonftiire. 5. Pembroke. 6. Pagets. 7. Warwick. 
8. Southampton, g. Sandys. There are but two places on the large 
ifland where a fliip can fafely come near the fliore, and thefe are fo 
well covered with high rocks, that few will chufe to enter in without 
a pilot ; and they are fo well defended by forts, that they have no 
occafion to dread an enemy. St, George's town is at the bottom 
of the principal haven, and is defended by nine forts, on which arc 
mounted feventy pieces of cannon that command the entrance. The 
town has a handfome church, a fine library, and a noble town-houfe, 
where the governor, council, &c. alTeQible. The tribes of South- 
ampton and Devonftiire have each a parifli church and library, and 
the former has a harbour of the fame name ; there are alio fcattered 
houfes and hamlets over many of the iflands, where particular plan- 
tations require them. The inhabitants are clothed chiefly with 
Britifli manufactures, and all their implements for tilling the ground 
and buiidiug ars made in Britain. 



It is uncertain who were the firft difcoverers of the Bermudas 
iflands. John Bermudas, a Spaniard, is commonly faid to have dif- 
covered them in 1527; but this is difputed, and the difcovcry at- 
tributed to Henry May, an Englifliman. As the iflands were with- 
out the reach of the Indian navigation, the Bermudas were abfohitely 
uninhabited when firft difcovered by the Europeans. May above- 
mentioned was fliipwrecked upon St. George's, and with the cedar 
which they felled there, aflllled by the wreck of their own ftiip, he 
and his companions built another which carried them to Europe, 
where they publiflied their accounts of the iflands. When Lord 
Delavvar was governor of Virginia, Sir Thomas Gates, Sir George 
■ Summers, and Captain Newport, were appointed to be his deputy- 
governors J but their fliip being feparated by a ftorm from the reft 
of the fquadron, was in the year 1609 wrecked on the Bermudas, 
and the governors difagreeing among themfelves, built each of them 
a new fliip of the cedar they found there, in which they feverally 
failed to Virginia. On their amval there, the colony was in fuch 
diftrefs, that Lord Delawar, upon the report which his deputy- 
governors made him of the plenty they found at the Bermudas, dif- 
patched Sir George Summers to bring provifions from thence to Vir- 
ginia, in the fame fliip which brought him from Bermudas, and 
which had not an punce of iron about it except one bolt in the keel. 
Sir George, after a tedious voyage, at laft reached the place of his 
deftination, where, foon after his arrival, he died, leaving his name 
to the iflands, and his orders to the crew to return with black hogs 
to the colony of Virginia. This part of his will, however, the 
failors did not chufe to execute, but fetting fail in their cedar fliip 
for England, landed fafely at Whitchurch in Dorfetftiire. 

Notvvithftanding this derelidion of the ifland, however, it was not 
without Englifli inhabitants. Two failors. Carter and Waters, being 
apprehenfive of punifliment for their criqies, had fecreted themfelves 
from their fellows when Sir George was wrecked upon the ifland, 
and had ever fince lived upon the natural productions of the foil. 
Upon the fecond arrival of Sir George, they enticed one Chard to 
remain with them ; but differing about the fovereignty of the ifland 
Chard and Waters were on the point of cutting one another's 
throats, when they were prevented by the prudence of Carter. Soon 
after, they had the good fortune to find a great piece of ambergris 
weighing about eighty pounds, befides other pieces, which in thofe 
days were futficient, if properly d f^ ofed of, to have made each Of 



them mafi-cr of a large eftatc. Where they were, this ambergris 
was ufeleis, and therefore they came to the defperate refohition of 
carrying themfclves and it in an open boat to Virginia or to New- 
foundland, where they hoped to difpofe of their treafure to advan- 
tage. In the mean time, however, the Virginia company claimed 
th* property of the Bermudas iflands, and accordingly fold it to one 
hundred and twenty perfons of their own fociety, who obtained a 
charter from King James for polfefling it. This new Bermudas 
company, as it was called, fitted out a fliip with fixty planters on 
board to fettle on the Bermudas, under the command of one Mr. 
Kichard Moor, by proftffion a carpenter. The new colony arrived 
upon the ifland juft at the time the three failors were about to depart 
with their ambergris ; which Moor having difcovered, he imme- 
diately feized and difpofed of it for the benefit of the company. 
So valuable a booty gave vaft fpirit to the new company ; and the 
adventnrers fettled themfelves upon St. George's ifland, where they 
railed cabins. As to Mr. Moor, he was indefatigable in his duty, 
and carried on the fortifying and planting the ifland with incredible 
diligence j for we are told, that he not only built eight or nine forts, 
or rather blockhoufes, but inured the fettlers to martial difcipline. 
Before the firfl: year of his government was expired, Mr. Moor re- 
ceived a fiipply of provifions and planters from England, and he 
plaiined out the town of St. George as it now ftandy. The fame 
of this fettkment foon awakened the jealouly of the Spaniards, 
who appeared off St. George's with fome veffch ; but being fired 
upon by the forts, they fheered off, though the Englifli at that time 
were fo ill provided for a defence, that they had fcarce a fingle bar- 
rel of gunpowder on the iiland. During Moor's gcr\ernment, the 
Bermudas were plagued with rats, which had been ia^ported into 
them by the Englifli fliips. This vermin multiplied lo fall in St. 
George's ifland, that they even covered the ground, and had nefls 
in the trees. They dcftroyed all the fruits and corn within doors ; 
nay, they increafed to fuch a degree, that St. George's ifland was 
at laft unable to maintain them, and they fwam over to the neigh- 
bouring iflands, where they made as great havoo. This calamity 
lafted five years, though probably not in tlie fune degree, and at 
Jafl: it ceafed all of a fudtlen. 

On the expiration of Moor's government, he was fucceeded by 
Cnptain Daniel Tucker, who improved all his predeceflbr's 
tor the benefit of the ifland, and particularly encouraged the culture 



*f tobacco. Being a fcvere difciplinarian, lie held all under him fo 
rigidly to duty, that five of his fubjefts planned as bold an enterprile 
for liberty as was perhaps ever put in execution. Their names were 
Barker, who is laid to have been a gentleman ; another Barker, a 
joiner; Goodwin, a fliip-rarpenter ; l*aet, a failor ; and Saunders, 
who planned the enterprife. Their management was as artful a3 
their defign was bold. Underftanding that the governor was de- 
terred from taking the plealure of fifhing in an open boar, on account 
of the dangers attending it, the}' propoied to build him one of a par- 
ticular conllruftion, which accordingly they did in a fecret part of the 
idand ; but when the governor came to view his boat, he underftood 
that the builders had put to fea in ir. The ir^teliigence was true ; for 
the adventurers having provided themfolves with the few neceflaries 
they wanted, failed for England ; and notwithftanding tlie ftorms 
they encountered, their being plundered by a French pnvater, and 
the incredible miferies they underwent, they landed in forty-two days 
time at Corke in Ireland, where they were generuufly relieved and 
entertained by the Earl of Thomond, 

In 1619, Captain Tucker refigned his government to Captain 
Butler. By this time the high character which the Summer if.ands 
bore in England, rendered it fafliionable for men of the highefl rank 
to encourage their fettlement ; and feveral of the firlt nobility of 
England had purchafed plantations among them. Captain Butlci 
brought over with him five hundred pafi'engers, who became planters 
on the iflands, and raifed a monument to the memory of Sir George 
Summers. The ifland was now fo populous, for it contained abou{ 
a thoufand whites, that Captain Butler applied himfelf to give it a 
newconftitution of government, by intioducing an aflembly, the go- 
vernment till this time being adminiftered only in the name of the 
governor and council. A body of laws was likewife drawn up, as 
agreeable to the laws of England as the fituation of the illand woulci 
admit of. One Mr. Barnard fncceeded Captain Butler as governor, 
but died in fix weeks after his arrival on the ifland ; upon which the 
council made choice of Mr. Harrifon to be governor tdl a new one 
fliould be appointed. No fewer than three thoufand Englifli were 
now fettled in the Bermudas, and feveral perfons of diftinftion had 
curiofity enough to vifit it from England. Among thefe was Mr. 
Waller the poet, a man of fortune, who being embroiled with the 
parliament and commonwealth of England, fpent fome months in the 
Summer iflands, which he has celebrated in one of his poems as the 

Vol, IV, ? p moil 


moft delightful place in the world. The dangers attending the navi- 
gation, and the imtowardly lituation of thefe iflands, through their 
diftance from the American continent, feem to be the reafon why the 
Bermudas did not now become the bell peopled iflands belonging to 
England; as we are told that at one period they \vere inhabited by 
no fewer than ten thoufand whites. The inhabitants, however, 
never Ihowed any great fpirit for commerce, and thus they never 
could become rich. This, together with the gradual alteration of 
the foil and climate, already taken notice of, foon caufed them to 
dwindle in their population ; and it is computed that they do not now 
contain above half the number of inhabitants they once did, and even 
thefe feem much more inclined to remove to fome other place than 
to flay where they are ; fo that unlefs fome beneficial branch of com- 
meice be found out, or fome ufeful manufa6hire eflabliflied, the ftate 
of fhe Bermudas mufl daily grow worfe and worfe. 

The following account we have extra6ted from Mr. Morfe, as he 
profefles to have given it on the authority of a gentleman who refided 
many years on the fpot : 

" The parifli of St. George's is an ifland to the eaftward of the 
main land, on which Hands the town of St. George's, containing about 
five hundred houfes. Contiguous to this is the ifland of St, David's, 
which fupplies the town with butter, milk, vegetables, poultry, and 
frefli meat, in the bofom of the crook lie a vaft number of fmall 
iflands, uninhabited. The ifland is rocky, and the ground hilly. 
In the main load a fulky may pafs j and even there, in many places, 
with difficulty ; but turn to the right or left, and it is paflable only 
on horfeback. The air is healthy ; a continual fpring prevails : 
cedars, mantled in green, always adorn the hills : the pafture ground 
is ever verdant ; the gardens ever in bloom. Mofl of the produc- 
tions of the Weil-Indies might be here cultivated. The houfes are 
built of a foft ftone, which is fawn like timber ; when expofed to the 
weather, and waflied with lime, it becomes hard. The houfes are 
white as fnow, which, beheld from an eminence, contrafted with 
the greennels of the cedars and pafl:ure ground, and the multitude 
of iflands, full in view, realize what the poets have feigned concern- 
ing the Elyflan fields. The inhabitants are numerous ; the whole 
ifland is a continued village ; no lefs, perhaps, than fifteen or twenty 
thoufand are colle«5led on this fmall fpot, of whom the blacks confli- 
tute two thirds. Happy for the country, were the colour unknown 
among them ! __Thp Bermudians are chiefly feafaring people ; few of 



the men are ever at home ; three or four hundred go annually to 
Turk's ifland to rake ialt, which is carried to America for provi- 
lions, or fold to fuch as may call at Turk's ifland, for cafti. However 
induftrious the men are abroad, at home they are indolent ; much 
given, particularly of late, . to g::imbling and luxury. The women 
are generally handfome and comely; they love their hufbands, their 
children, and their drefs. Dancing is their favourite amufement. 
The men muft be equipped in taft:e wben they appear in company, 
fiiould they not have a dollar in the pound to pay their creditors ; the 
women muft array themfelves like the belles of Paris, fliould they 
not have a morfel of bread to preferve their blooming complexion. 
They are thoroughly acquainted with one another's families, and 
from their tea table, as from their atmofphere, arifes conftant 
gufls of fcandal and detraftion. To fi:rangers they are kind, but 
among themfelves are quarrelforae : their friendly intercourfe is too 
much confined within a narrow circle, bsunded by coufins or fecond 

*' The common food of the Bermudians is cotFee, fifli of different 
kinds, a fweet potatoe, Indian corn, and American flour. Their 
water is rain preferved in cillerns ; the general drink is grog. Fi fil- 
ing is the favourite amufement of the men. The government is con- 
duced under a governor named by the crown of England, a council, 
and general aflembly. The efl:ablilhed religion is Epifcopacy, 
There are nine churches ; three clergymen have the charge of thefe 
nine : there is one Prelbyterian church. A regard for religion is 
not the charafteriflic of the Bermudians ; they feldom go to church, 
except it be to attend a funeral, or to get their children baptized, or 
to hear a ftranger." 

We fhall clofe this account of the Bermudas with the following 
cxtra^V from the report of the privy council on the flave trade : 

*' Nothing can better fliew the ftate of flavery in Bermudas than the 
behaviour of the blacks in the late war. There were at one time be- 
tween fifteen and twenty privateers fitted out from hence, which were 
partly manned by negro flaves, who behaved both as failors and ma- 
riaes irreproachably ; and whenever they were captured^always re- 
turned, if it was in their power. There were feveral inftancta 
wherein they had been condemned with the veflel and fold, and af- 
terwards found means to efcape ; and through many difficulties and 
hardfliips returned ty their mailers fcrvice. In the fliip Regulator, 

P p z a pri- 

igz genera! description 

a privateer, there were feventy flaves. She was taken and carried 
into Bofton ; fixty of them returned in a flag of truce directly to 
Bermudas ; nine others returned by the way of New-York ; one only 
was miffing, who died in the cruize, or in captivity,*' 


The Bahamas are fituated between 22" and 2y^ degrees north la- 
titude, and 73° and 81' degrees weft longitude. They extend along 
thecoafl of Florida quite down to Cuba, and are faid to be five hun- 
dred in number, fome of them only rocks, but twelve of them are 
large and fertile ; all are, however, uninhabited, except Provi- 
dence, which is two hundred miles eaft of the Floridas ; though 
fome others are larger and more fertile, and on which the Englifh 
have plantations. 

Thefe iflands were the firft fruits of Columbus's difcoveries ; but 
they were not known to the Englifli till 1667. The ifle of Provi- 
dence became an harbour for the buccaneers, or pirates, who for a 
long time infefted the American navigation. This obliged the go- 
vernment, in 1 7 18, to fend out Captain Woodes Rogers with a fleet 
to diflodge the pirates, and for making a fettlement. This the cap- 
tain effected ; a fort was erected, and an independent company was 
ftationed in the ifland. Ever fince this laft fettlement, thefe iflanas 
have been improving, though they advance but flowly. In time of 
war the inhabitants, as well as others, gain by the prizes condemned 
there, and at all times by the wrecks which are frequent in this laby- 
rinth of rocks and flielves. The Spaniards and Americans captured 
thefe iflands during the laft war, but they were retaken on the 7th 
of April, 1783. 

BESIDES the above enumerated, Great-Britain poffelTes part of a 
clufter of iflands called the Virgin iflands, of which there is but little 
authentic intelligence extant. JNIr. Edwards obferves refpeding 
them, that if his inquiries were not negle<5ted, his cxpedations were 
»0t anfvvercd. They were difcovcred .\nd named by Columbus, but 
3 *^6 


the Spaniards of thofe days deemed them unworthy of their atten- 
tention. They are about forty in number, whereof the EngHfli 
hold Tortola, Virgin Gorda, or Peniflon, Jofvan Dykes, Guana 
iile, Beef and .Thatch iflands, Anegada, Necliar, Prickly Pear, 
Camana's, Ginger, Coopers, Salt, and Peter's iiland, with fome 
other of no value. Tortola is the principal, it was originally 
peopled by Dutch buccaneers, who were afterwards driven from 
thence by a party of Englifiimen of the fafne dclcription. The chief 
merit of its improvement refls with a party of Englifli fettlers from 
Anguilla, who about the year 1690, embarked from thence and took 
up their refidence in thefe iflands ; here they formed thcmfelves into 
a fociety, their wants were i'ew and their government fimple and 
unexpenfive ; a council chofen from among themfelves, with a pre- 
lident, exercifcd both a legiflative and judicial authority, determining 
all queftions and appeds, without expenfe to either party. Taxes 
there were none, when money was wanting it was raifcd by voluntary 
contribution. Lured by the profpefts of European intercourfe, they, 
however, purchafed in 1773, the privilege of being the suejects" 
ef the king cf Great-Britain, at tlie price of four and a half per cent, 
on all their produce, and four hundred pounds currency per annum 
toward the falary of the governor-general of the Leeward i'lands. 
Thus does man, unacquainted with his native rights and privileges, 
under the power of prejudice, parchafe of his fellow creature the 
right to enjoy what God and Nature had made his own. Pofterity, 
however, better acquainted with the rights of man, will perhaps not 
only difpute the validity of ads of this kind, but cancel contrafts 
which their forefathers had no right to make. 

The number of inhabitants on thefe iflands at the period above re- 
ferred to, was about fifteen hundred whites, and feven thoufand 
blacks. It is fuppofed the white inhabitants do not exceed one 
thoufand, while the blacks are at leaft ten thoufand. In 1787, 
there was exported from thefe iflands, in forty fliips of fix thoufand 
five hundred and fixteen tons, I'eventy-nine thoufand two himdred 
and three, hundred weight of fugar; twenty-one thoulimd four hun- 
dred and feventeen gallons of rum ; two thoufand and eleven gallons 
of molafles ; two hundred and eighty-nine thoufand and feventy-four 
pounds of cotton ; dying goods to the value of fix thoufand iix hun- 
dred and fifty-one pounds two fhillings and fix-pence, and other 
mifcellaneous articles to the value of two thoufand three hundred and 



forty pounds eighteen fliilHngs and five-pence. But thefe, like molt 
of tiie other iflands, are on the decline. 

With the following tables, which we conceive will afford a com- 
prehenfive view of the Weft-India trade, we fhall clofe our account 
of the Britifli iflands. 




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( *97 ) 



V>»UBA Js a large and very valuable ifland, arid by far the moft 
important of all the Spanifti Weft-Indies. On the eaft fide it begins 
at 20° 2i' north latitude, touches the tropic of Cancer on the north, 
and extends from 74* to 85*^ 15' weft longitude. It lies (ixty miles 
to the weft of Hifpaniola, twenty-five leagues north of Jamaica, one 
hundred miles to the eaft of Jucatan, and as many to the fouth of 
cape Florida, and commands the entrance of the gulphs both of 
MexicO' and Florida, as alfo the windward paflages. By thisfituation 
it may be called the key of the Weft-Indies. It was difcovered by 
Columbus in 1492, who gnve it the name of Ferdinando, in honour 
of king Ferdinand of Spain, but it quickly after recovered its ancient 
name of Cuba. The natives did not regard Columbus with a very 
favourable eye at his landing, and the weather proving very tempef* 
tuous, he foon left this ifland, and failed to Hayta, now called Hif- 
paniola, where he was better received. The Spaniards, howevtfr, 
foon became mafters of it. By the year 151 1, it was totally con* 
quered, and in that time they had deftroyed, according to their own 
accounts, fevcral millions of people. But the poffeffion of Cuba 
was far from anfwering the expedtations of the Spanifti adventurers, 
whofe avarice could be fatiated with nothing but gold. Thefe mon- 
fters finding that there was gold upon the ifland, concluded that it 
Hiuft come from mines, and therefore tortured the few inhabitants 
they had left, in order to extort from them a difcovery of the places 
where thefe mines lay. The miferies endured by thefc poor crc^- 
VoL. IV. Q^q lures 


tiires were fuch, that they almofl: unanimoufly refolved to put ati 
end to their own lives, but were prevented by one of the Spanifli ty- 
rants called Vafco Porcellos. This wretch threatened to hang him- 
felf along with them, that he might have the pleafure, as he faid, of 
tormehting them in the next world worfe than be had done in this ; 
and fo much were they afraid of the Spaniards, that this threat di» 
verted thefe poor favages from their defperate refolution. In 1 511, 
the town of Havanhah was built, now the principal place on the 
ifland. The houfes were at fir{l built only of wood, and the town itfelf 
was for a long time fo inconfiderable, that in 1536 it was taken by a 
French pirate, who obliged the inhabitants to pay feven hundred 
ducats to fave it from being burnt. The very day after the pirate's 
departure, three Spanifh fhips arrived from Mexico, and having un- 
loaded their cargoes, failed in purfuit of the pirate fl\ip. But fuch 
was the cowardice of the officers, that the pirate took all the three 
iliips, and returning to the Havannah, obliged the inhabitants to pay 
feven hundred ducats more. To prevent misfortunes of this kind, 
the inhabitants built their houfes of llone, and the place has fince 
been flrongly fortified. 

According to Abbe Raynal, the Spanifh fettlement at Cuba is very 
important, on three accounts : i. The produce of the country, which 
is confiderable. a. As being the ftaple of a great trade; and, 3. As 
being the key to the Wefl-Indies. The principal produce of this 
ifland is cotton ; the commodity, however, through negleft, is now 
become (o fcarce, that fometimes feveral years pafs without any of it 
being brought into Europe. In the place of cotton, cotfee has been 
cultivated, but by a fimilar negligence, that is produced in no great 
quantity; the whole produced not exceeding thirty or thirty-five 
thoufand weight, one-third of which is exported to Vera Cruz, and 
the reft to Madrid. The cultivation of coffee naturally leads to that 
of fugar ; and this, which is the moft valuable production of Ame- 
rica, would of itfelf be fufficient to give Cuba that ftate of profperity 
for which it feems defigned by nature. Although the furface of the 
ifland is in general uneven and mountainous, yet it has plains fufiici- 
ently extenlive, and well enough watered, to fupply the confump- 
tion of the greateft part of Europe with fugar. The incredible ferti- 
lity of its new lands, if properly managed, would enable it to furpafs 
every other nation, however they may have now got the ftart of it ; 
yet fuch Is the indolence of the Spaniards, that to this day they have 
but few plantations, where with the fineft canes, they make but a 



fmall quantity of ccirfe fugar at a great expenfc. This ferves partly 
for the Mexican market, and partly for the mother country, while 
the indolent inhabitants are content to import fugar for themfelves at 
the cxpenfe of near two hundred and twenty thoufand pounds annu- 
ally. It has been expefted, with probability, that the tobacco im- 
ported from Cuba would compenfate tins lofs, for after furnifliing 
Mexico and Peru, there was fufficient, with the little brought from 
Caracca and Buenos Ayres, to fupply all Spain. Eut this trade, too, 
has declined through the negligence of the court of Madrid, in not 
gratifying the general tafle for tobacco from the Havannah. The 
Spanifli colonies have an univerfal trade in Ikins, and Cuba fupplies 
annually about ten or twelve thoufand. The number might eafily 
be increafed in a country abounding with wild cattle, where fome 
gentlemen pollefs large trails of ground, that for want of popuLv 
tion can fcarce be applied to any other purpofe than that of breeding 
cattle. The hundredth part of this ifland is not yet cleared ; the 
true plantations are all confined to the beautiful plains of the Havan- 
nah, and eyen thofe are not what they might be ; all thefe planta- 
tions together may employ about twenty-five thoufand male and female 
flaves. The number of whites, meftees, mulattoes, and free ne- 
groes upon the whole ifland, amounts to about thirty thoufand. The 
food of thcfe different fpecies confifts of excellent pork, very bad 
beef, and calfava bread. The colony would be more flourifhing if 
its productions had not been made the property of a company, whofe 
exclufive privilege operates as a conftant and invariable principle of 
difcouragement. If any thing could fupply the want of an open 
trade, and atone for the grievances occafioned by this 
Cuba, it would be the advantage which this ifland has for fuch a 
long time enjoyed, in being the rendezvous of almoft all the Spanifh. 
vefl'els that fail to the new world ; this pra6lice commenced almofl 
with the colony itfeif. Ponce de Leon having made an attempt upon 
Florida in 15 12, became acquainted with the new canal of Bahama; 
it was immediately difcovered that this was the beft route the (hips 
bound from Mexico to Europe could poflibly take, and to this th< 
wealth of the ifland is principally, if not altogether, owing. 


Hifpaniola, called alfo St. Domingo, is the largeft of the Carib- 
bee ifiands, extending about four hundred and twenty miles from 
eaft to well, and one hundred and twenty in breadth from north to 

Q^q % fouth 


Ibuth, lying between 17^37' and 20° of north latitude, and between 
67" 35^ and 74" 15' weft longitude. The climate is hot, but not 
reckoned unwholefome, and fome of the inhabitants are faid to arrive 
at the age of one hundred and twenty. It is foraetimes refrefhed by 
.breezes and rains, and its falubrity is likewife in a great meafure 
©wing to the beautiful variety of hills and valleys, woods and rivers, 
which every where prefent themfelves. It is indeed reckoned by far 
the fineft and moft pleafant iiland of the Antilles, as being the beft 
accommodated to ail the purpcfes of life when ctuly cultivated. 
' This ifland, famous for being the earlieft fettlement of the Spa- 
niards in the new world, was at firft in high eilimation for the quan- 
tity of gold it fupplied ; this wealth diminiflied with the inhabitants 
of the country, whom they obliged to dig it out of the bowels of the 
earth ; and the fource of it was entirely dried up, when they were 
exterminated, which was quickly done, by a feries of the moft 
fliocking barbarities that ever difgraced the hiftory of any nation. 
Benzoni relates, that of two millions of inhabitants contained in the 
Ifland when diicovered by Columbus in 1492, fcarce one hundred 
and fifty-three were alive in 1545. A vehement defire of opening 
again this fource of wealth, inlpired the thought of getting flaves 
from Africa ; but, befides that thefe were found unfit for the labours 
they were deftined to, the multitude of mines which then began to be 
wrought on the continent, made thofe of Hifpaniola no longer of 
any importance. An idea now fuggefted itfelf, that their negroes 
which were healthy, ftrong, and patient, might be ufefully employed 

n hufbandry ; and they adopted, through neceflity, a wife refolu- 
Jion, which, had they known their own intereft, they would have 
embraced by choice. 

The produce of their induftry was at firft extremely fmall, becaufe 
the labourers were few. Charles V, who, like moll fovereigns, pre- 
ferred his favourites to every thing, had granted an exclufive right of 
the flave trade to a Flemifli nobleman, who made over his privilege 
to theGenoefe, who conducted this infamous commerce as all mono- 
polies are conduced ; they refolved to fell dear, and they fold but 
few . When time and competition had fixed the natural and neceflfary 
price of flaves, the number of them increafed- It may eafily be 

niaginedthat the Spaniards, who had been accuftomed to treat the 
Indians as beafts, did not entertain a higher opinion of thefe negro 
Africans, whom they fubftituted in their place. Degraded ftill far- 

hcr in_ their eyes by the price they had paid for them, they aggra- 


vated the weight of their fervitude, it became intolerable, and thefe 
wretched Haves made an effort to recover the unalienable rights of 
mankind ; their attempt proved nnfucceist'ul, but they reaped this 
benefit from their dcfpair, that they were afterwards treated with 
left inhumanity. 

This moderation, if tyranny cramped by the apprehenfion of re- 
volt can defer\'e that name, was attended with fome trof)d confe- 
quences. Cultivation was piufued with lome degree jr fnocefs. 
Soon after the middle of the i6th century, Spain drew annually from 
this colony ten millions weight of fugar, a large quantity of wood for 
dying, tobacco, cacoa, caffia, ginger, couon, and pelcry in abun- 
dance. One might imagine that fuch favourable beginnings would 
give both the defire and the means of cariying them farther; 
but a train of events more fatal each than the other, ruined thefe 

The firft misfortune arofe from the depopulation of the ifland ; the 
Spanifli conquerts on the continent Ihouid naturally have contributed 
to promote the fuccefs of ai: ifland, which nature feemed to havs 
formed to be the center of that vail dominion arifing around it, to tc 
the ftaple of the different colonies. But it fell out quite oth.r.vife ; 
ori a view of the imraenfe fortunes raifing in JNIexico, and other 
parts, the richeft inhabitants of Hifpaniola began to defpife their fet- 
tlements, and quitted the true lource of riches, which is en the fur- 
face of the er.rth, to go and ranfack the bowels of it for veins of gold, 
which are quickly exhaufled. The government endeavoured in vaia 
to put a flop to this emigration ; the laws were always either artfully 
eluded, or openly violated. 

The weaknefs, which was a neceffary confequence of fuch a con- 
duft, leaving the coafts without defence, encouraged ihe enemies of 
Spain to ravage them. Even the capital of this illand was taken and 
pillaged by that celebrated Englifli failor. Sir Fraricis Drake. The 
cruifers of lefs coi.fequence contented themfelves with intercepting 
veffels in their paflage through thofe latitudes, the bell known at 
that time of any in the new world. To complete thefe misfortunes, 
the Caftilians themfelves commenced pirates ; they attacked no fhips 
but thofe of their own nation, which were more rich, worfe provi- 
ded, and worfe defended than any others. Tlie cuflom they had of 
fitting out (hips clandcftinely, in order to procure flaves, prevented 
them fron» being known, and the afliftance they purchafed from 
4 the 


the fiiips of war, commiffioned to protect the trade, infured to them 

The foreign trade of the colony was its only refource in this dif- 
trefs, and that was illicit; but as it continued to be carried on, not- 
withftanding the vigilance of the governors, or, perhaps, by their 
connivance, the policy of an exafpeiated and fhort-fighted court 
exerted itfelf in demoliftiing moft of the fea ports, and driving the 
miferable inhabitants into the inland country. This aft of violence 
threw them into a ftate of dejeftion, which the incurfions and fet- 
tlement of the French on the ifiand afterwards carried to the utmoft 
pitch. The latter, after having made fome unfuccefsful attempts to 
fettle on the ifiand, had part of it yielded to them in 1697, and now 
enjoy by far the beft fhare. 

Spain, totally taken up with that vaft empire which flie had formed 
on the continent, ufed no pains to dilTipate this lethargy ; flie even 
refufed to liften to the folicitations of her Flemifli fubjeds, who 
earneflly prelled that they might have permiffion to clear thofe fertile 
lands. Rather than run the riik of feeing them carry on a contra- 
band trade on the coafts, flie chofe to bury in oblivion a fettlement 
which had been of confequence, and was likely to become fo again. 

This colony, which had no longer any intercourfe with Spain but 
by a fingle ihip, of no great burden, that arrived from thence every 
third year, confifted, in 1717, of eighteen thoufand four hundred 
and ten inhabitants, including Spaniards, meftees, negroes or mu- 
lattoes. The complexion and charafter of thefe people differed ac- 
cording to the different proportions of American, European and 
African blood they had received from that natural and tranfient union 
which reftores all races and conditions to the fame level. Thefe 
demi-favages, plunged in the extreme of floth, lived upon fruits 
and roots, dwelt in cottages without furniture, and molt of them 
■without clothes. The few among them, in whom indolence had not 
totally fupprefled the fenfe ot decency and tafte for the coaveniencies 
of life, purchafed clothes of their neighbours the French in return 
for their cattle, and the money fent to them for tht maintenance of 
two hundred foldiers, the prieils and tlie government. It doth not 
appear that the company, formed at Eaicclona in 1757, with ex- 
clufive privileges for the rc-eftablifliment of St. Dommgo, hath as 
yet made any confiderable progrefs. They fend out only two fmall 
veflels annually, which are freighted back with fix thoufand hides, 
and fomc other commodities of little value. 



Domingo, the capital of the ifland, is feated in that part belonging 
to the Spaniards on the foinh fide of the ifland, and has a commo- 
dious harbour. The town is built in the Spanifli manner, with a 
great fquare in the middle of it, about which are the cathedral and 
other public buildings. From this fquare run the principal ftreets in 
a diredt line, they being crofTed by others at right angles, fo that the 
form of the town is almoft fquare. The country on the north and 
eaft fide is pleafant and fruitful ; and there is a large navigable river 
on the weft, with the ocean on the fouth. It is the fee of an arch- 
bifliop, an ancient royal audience, and the feat of the governor. It 
has feveral fine churches and monafteries, and is fo well fortified; 
that a fleet and army feat by Oliver Cromwell, in 1654, could not 
take it. The inhabitants are Spaniards, negroes, mulattoes, meftees, 
and Albatraces, of whom about a fixth part may be Spaniards. It 
had formerly about two thoufand houfes, but it is much declined of 
late years. The river on which it is feated is called Ozama. Weft 
longitude 69° 30', north latitude iS° 25', 


This ifland is fituated between 64° and 67° wefl longitude, and 
18° north latitude, lying between Hifpaniola and St. Chriitophei's. 
It is one hundred miles in length and forty in breadth. 

Although this ifland had been difcovered and vifited by Colum- 
bus in 1493, the Spaniards neglefted it till 1509, when the third of 
gold brought them thither from Sr. Domingo, under the command 
of Ponce de Leon, to make a conqueft, which afterwards cofl them 

Porto Rico hath thirty-fix leagues in length, eighteen in breadth, 
and one hundred in circumference. We may venture to affirm, that 
it is one of the beft, if not entirely the beft, of the iflands of the 
new world, in proportion to its extent. The air is wholefome, and 
tolerably temperate, and it is watered by the pure ftreams of a con- 
llderable number of fmall rivulets. Its mountains are covered with 
either ufeful or valuable trees, and its vallies have a degree of fer- 
tility feldom to be met with elfewhere. All the proclu6tions peculiar 
to America thrive upon this deep foil. A fafe port, commodious 
harbours, and coafts of eafy accefs, are added to thefe feveral ad- 

On this territory, deprived of its favage inhabitants by ferocious 
deeds, the memory of v.hich more tiian three centuries have not 



been nble to obliterate, was fucceffively formed a population of forty- 
four the: '"I'-ct eight hundred and eighty-three men, either white or of 
a m>xt': -ir : moft of them were naked: their habitations were no- 
thing more 'han huts. Nature, with little or no affiftance, fupplied 
them vvith fubfiftence. The iinens, and fome other things of little 
value, which they clan^eftinely obtained from the neighbouring OE 
from foreign iflands, were paid for by the colony with tobacco, cattle, 
and with the money which was fent by government for the fupporl 
bf the civil, religious and military eftablifliment. They received 
from Spain annually only one fmali vefTel, the cargo of which did 
not amount to more than ten thoufand crowns^ and, which returned, 
to Europe laden with hides. 

Such v/as Porto Rico, when, in 1765, the court of Madrid car- 
ried their attention to St. John, an excellent harbour, even for the 
roval navy, and which only wants a little more extent. The town 
which commands it was furrounded with fortifications. The works 
were made particularly ftrong towards a narrow and marfliy neck of 
land, the only place by which the town can be attacked on the land 
fide. Two battalions and one company of artillery crofled the fea for 
its defence. 

At this period, a pofTeffion which had annxially received from the 
treafurv no more than three hundred and feventy-eight thoufand 
livres. coft them two millions fix hundred and thirty-four thoufand 
four hundred and thirty-three livres, which fum was regularly brought 
from Mexico. This increafe of fpecie ftiraulated the colonifts to un- 
dertake fome labours : at the fame time the ifland, which till then 
had been under the yoke of monopoly, was allowed to receive all 
Spanifli navigators. Thefe two circumftances united, imparted 
lome degree of animation to a fettlement, the languifliing ftate (rf 
which aftoniflied all nations. Its tithes, which before 1765 did not 
yield more than eighty-one thoufand livres, have increafed to two 
hundred and thirty thoufand four hundred and eighteen livres. 

On the firft of January, 1778, the population of Porto Rico 
amounted to fourfcore thoufand fix hundred and fi«ty inhabitants^ 
of which number only fix thoufand five hundred and thirty were 
flaves. The inhabitants reckoned feventy-feve« thoufand three 
hundred and eighty-four head of horned cattle, twenty -'hree thou- 
fand one hundred and ninety-five horfes, fifteen hundred and fifteen 
mules, and forty-nine thoufand fifty-egl t head of fimll cattle. 



The plantantions, the number of which were fife thoufand fix 
hundred and eighty-one, produced two thoufand leven hundred and 
thirty-feven quintals of fugar 5 eleven hundred and fourteen quintals 
of cotton; eleven thoufand one hundred and fixty-three quintals of 
coffee; nineteen thoufand five hundred and fifty-Ux quintals of rice; 
fifteen thoufand two hundred and fixteen quintals of maize ; feven 
thoufand four hundred and fifty-eight quintals of tobacco ; and nine 
thoufand eight hundred and fixty quintals of molafi!es. 

The cattle in the feveral pafture grounds, which were two hundred 
and thirt3'«four in number, produced annually eleven thoufand three 
hundred and fixty-four oxen; four thoufand rhree hundred and 
thirty-four horfes ; nine hundred and fifty-two mules ; thirty-one 
thoufand fWo hundred and fifty-four head of fmall cattle. 

Till the year 1778, no one citizen of Porto Rico was in reality 
matter of his polteffions. The commanders who had fucceeded each 
other had only granted the income of them. This inconeeivable 
defeft hath at length been remedied : the proprietors have been 
confirmed in their poffeffions by a law, upon condition of paying 
annually one real and a quarter, or fixteen fols fix dcniers, for 
every portion of ground of twenty-five thoufand feven hundred and 
eight toifes, which they employed in cultures ; and three quarters 
of a real, or ten fols one denier and a half, for that part of the 
foil that is referved for pafture ground. This eafy tribute is to 
ferve for the clothing of the militia, compofed of one thoufand nine 
hundred infantry, and two hundred and fifty cavalry. The remainder 
of the ifland is diftributed on the fame conditions to thofe who have 
little or no property. Thefe laft, who are diftinguiftied by the; 
name of Agreges, are feven thoufand eight hundred and thirty- five 
in number; 


Trinidad is fituated between 59" and 62'' weft longitude, and 
10° north latitude; it was difcovered by Columbus, who landed oh 
it in 1498, but it wa* not till 1535 that the court of Madrid took 
pofleffion of it. 

It is faid to comprehend three hundred and eighteen fquare leagues. 
It hath never experienced any hurricane, and its climate is whole- 
fome. The rains are very abundant there from the middle of May 
to the end of (Xtober ; and the drynefs that prevails throughout the 

Vol, IV. R x reft 


reft of the year is not attended with any inconvenience, becaufe the 
country, though deftitute of navigable rivers, is very well watered. 
The earthquakes are more frequent than dangerous. In the interior 
part of the ifland there are four groups of mountains, which, toge- 
ther with fome others formed by Nature upon the fliores of the ocean, 
occupy a third part of the territory : the reft is in general fiifceptiblc 
of the richeft cultures. 

The form of the ifland is a long fquare. To the north is a coaft 
of twenty-two leagues in extent, too much elevated and too much 
divided ever to be of any ufe. The eaftern coaft is only nineteen 
leagues in extent, but in all parts as convenient as one could wifli it 
to be. The ibuthern coait hath flve-and-twenty leagues, is a little 
exalted, and adapted for the fuccefsful cultivation of coffee and cacao. 
The land on the weftern fide is feparated from the reft of the co- 
lony, to the fouth by the Soldier's canal, and to the north by the 
Dragon's mouth, and forms, by means of a recefs, a harbour of 
twenty leagues in breadth, and thirty in depth. It offers, in all fea- 
fons, a fecure afylum to the navigators, who, during the greateft 
part of the year, would find it difficult to anchor any where elfe, ex- 
cept at the place called the Galiote. 

In this part are the Spanifli fettlements : they confift only of the 
port of Spain, upon which there are feventy-eight thatched huts ; 
and of St. Jofeph, fituated three leagues farther up the country, 
where eighty-eight families, ftill more wretched than the former, ace 

The cacao was formerly cultivated near thefe two villages ; its 
excellence made i: be preferred even to that of Caraccas. In order 
to fecure it, the merchants ufed to pay for it beforehand. The trees 
that produced it periflied all in 1727, and have not been re-planted 
fince. The monks attributed this difafter to the colonifts having re- 
fnfed to pay the tithes. Thofe who were not blinded by interelt or 
fuperftition, afcribed it to the north winds, which have too frequently 
occafioned the fame kind of calamity in other parts. Since this pe- 
riod, Trinidad hath not been much more frequented than Cu- 
bagua ; ftill, however, it produces fugar, fine tobacco, indigo, gin- 
ger, and a variety of fruits, with fome cotton trees and Indian corn, 
which render it of fome importance. 

Ciibagua is a httle ifiand, at the diftance of four leagues only fi"om 
the continent, was difcovercd, and neglec^ted by CoJurnbus, in i-;98. 
7' he Spaniards, being afterwards informed that its fliores contained 



great treafurcs, repaired to it in multitudes in 1509, and gave it the 
uatne of Pearl Ifland. 

The pearl bank was foon exhauftcd, and the colony was trans- 
ferred, in 1524, to Margaretta, where the regretted riches were 
found, and from whence they disappeared almoft as foon. 

Yet this lafi; fcttlement, which is fifteen leagues in length and five 
ill breadth, was not abandoned. It is almojl: continually covered 
with thick fogs, although nature hath not beftowcd upon it any 
current waters. There is no village in it except Mcjn Padre, which 
is defended by a Imall f<;rt : its foil would be fruitful if it were cul- 

It was almoft generally fiippofed, that the court of Madrid, in 
preferving Margaretta and Trinidad, meant rather to keep off rival 
nations from this continent than to derive any advantage from them : 
at prefent we are induced to think otherwife : convinced that the 
Archipelago of America was full of inhabitants loaded with debts, or 
who poffefled but a fniall quantity of indifferent land, the council 
of Charles III. offered great conceffions, in th&fe two illands, 
to thofe who fliould embrace their faith. The freedom of com- 
merce with all the Spanifh traders was infured to them. They were 
only obliged to deliver their cacao to the company of Caraccas, but 
at tvventy-feven fols per pound, and under the condition that this 
company fliould advance them fome capital. Thefe overtures have 
only met with a favourable reception at Granada, from whence fome 
Frenchmen have made their efcape with a few Haves, either to 
Ikreen themfelves from the purfuits of their creditors, or from aver- 
lion to the fway of the Englifli. In every other part they have had 
no effeft, whether from averfion for an oppreflive government, or 
whether it be that the expec^lations of all are at prefent turned to- 
wards the north of the new world. 

Trinidad and Margaretta are at prefent inhabited only hy a few 
Spaniards, who, with fome Indian women, have formed a race of 
men, who, uniting the indolence of the favage to the vices of ci- 
vilifed nations, are fluggards, chents and zealots. They live upon 
maize, upon what fifli they catch, and upon bananas, which Nature, 
out of indulgence, as it were, to their flothi'ulnefs, produces there of 
a larger fize, and better quality, than in any other part of the Archi- 
pelago. They have a breed of lean and taftelefs cattle, with which 
they carry on a fraudulent traffic to the French colonies, exchanging 
them for camlets, bl^ck veils, linens, filk llockings, white hats, and 

R r % hard- 


hardware. The number of their veflels does not exceed thirty floopb, 
without decks. 

The tame animals of thefe two iflands have filled the woods with 
a breed of horned cattle, which are become wild : the inhabitants 
faoot them, and cut their fiefh into flips of three inches in breadth 
and one in thicknefs, which they dry? after having melted the fat 
out of them, fo that they will keep three or four months. This pro» 
vifion, which is called tafTajo, is fold in the French fettlements for 
twenty livres a hundred weight. 

All the money which the government fends to thefe two iflands, 
falls into the hands of the commandants, the officers civil and mi- 
litary, and the monks. The remainder of the people, who do not 
amount to mare than fixteen hundred, live in a ftate of the mod 
deplorable poverty. In time of war they fuinifli about two hundred 
men, who, for the fake of plunder, offer themfelves, without dif- 
tinftion, to any of the colonies that happen to be fitting out cruizera 
for fea. Befides thefe, there are fome other fmall iflands claimed by 
the Spaniardsj but to which they have paid Ihtle or no attention. 


( 3='9 ) 


M A R T I N I C O. 


.ARTINICO is the chief of the French Caribbee iflands, the 
middle of which is fituated in weft longitude 61° 0', north latitude 
14° 30'. 

This illand was firft fettled by M. Defnambuc a Frenchman, in the 
year 1635, with only one hundred men from St. Chriftopher's. He 
chofe rather to have it peopled from thence than from iiurope, as he 
forefaw that men tired with the fatigue of fuch a long voyage, would 
moftly perifh foon after their arrival, either from the climate, or 
from the hardfhips incident to moft emigrations. They completed 
their firft fettlement without any diftinury ; the natives, intimidated by 
their fire arms, or feduced by promifes, gave up the weftern and 
fouthern parts of the ifland to the new comers. In a fliort time, 
however, perceiving the number of thefe enterprifing ftrnngers daily 
increafing, they refolved to extirpate them, and tiierefore called in the 
favages of the neighbouring illands to affift them ; they fell jointly 
upon a little fort that had been haftily erefted, but were repulfed 
with the lofs of feven or eight hundred of their beft warriors, who 
were left dead upon the fpot. 

After this check, the favages for a long time difappeared entirely, 
but at laft they returned, bringing with them prefents to the French, 
and making excufes for what had happened • they were received in 
a friendly manner, and the reconciliation lealed with pots of brandy. 
This peaceable ftate of affairs, however, was of no long continuance, 
the French took fuch undue advantagcj of their fuperiority over the 
favages, that they foon rekindled in the others that hatred which had 
pevei- been entirely fubdued. The favages feparated into fmall bands, 



and waylaid the French as they came fingly out into the woods to 
hiuit^ and waiting till the fportfman had difcharged his piece, ruflied 
■upon and killed him before he could charge it again. Twenty men 
had been thus airaffinat.ed before any reafon could be given for their 
fudden difappearance ; but as foon as the matter was known the 
French took a feyere and fatal revenge ; the favages were purfued and 
mallacred, with their wives and children, and the few that efcaped 
were driven out of Martinico, to which they pever returned. 

The French being thus left fole mafters of the ifland, lived quietly 
on thqfe fpots which beft fuited their inclinations. At this time they 
were divided into tw j clafles ; the firft conlifted of thofe who had 
paid their palTage to the ifland, and thefe were called inhabitants, and 
to thefe the government diftributed lands, which became their own, 
upon paying a yearly tribute. Th.efe inhabitants had under their com- 
|Tiand a multitude of diiorderly people brought over from Europe at 
their expenfe, whom they Called engage's, or bondfmen. This 
engagement was a kind of flavery for the term of three years, on the 
expiration of which they v/ej-e at liberty, and became the equals of 
thofe whom they -had lerved. They all confined themfelves at firll 
to the culture of tobacco and cotton, to which was focn added that 
of arnotto and indigo. The culture of fugar alfo v/as begun about 
the year 1650. Ten years after, one Benjamin D'Acofla, ^ Jew, 
planted fome cacao trees, but his exan^ple was not followed till 
1684, when chocolate was more commonly ufed in France. Cacao 
then became the principal fupport of thecolonifts, who had ^lot a fuf- 
ficient fund to undertake fugar plantations ; but by the inclemency of 
the feafon in 17 18, all the cacao trees were deftroyed at once. Coffee 
was then propofed as a proper object of culture: the French mln.iftry 
had received as a prefent from the Dutch, two of thefe trees, which 
were carefully prefervcd in the king's botanical garden. Two young 
fhoots were taken from thefe, put on board a fliip for Martinico, 
and entrufted to the care of one M. Defclieux ; this fliip happened to 
be flraitened for want of frefli watei,, and the trees would have pe- 
riflied, had not thcgentkman fl:ared with tbem that quantity of water 
which was allowed for his own drinking. The culture of coffee was 
then begun, and attended with the greateft and moil: rjipid fuccefs ; 
about the end of the laft century, however, the colony had made but 
fmall advances. In 1700 it had only fix thoufand five hundred and 
ninety-feven white inhabitants j the favagrs, niulattoes, and free 
negroes, men, women, and children, amounted to no more than 



five hundred and feven ; the number of flaves was but fourteen 
thoufand five hundred and iixty-fix ; all thefe together made a po- 
pulation of twenty-one thoufand fix hundred and forty-five 

After the peace of Utrecht, Martinico began to emerge from that 
feeble flate in which it had fo long continued. The ifiand then be- 
came the mart for all the windward French fettlcmcnts ; in its ports 
the neighbouring iflands fold their produce, and bought the commo- 
dities of the mother country ; and, in fliort, Maitinico became fa- 
mous all over Enrope : their labour improved the plantations ag 
far as was confiilent with the confumption then made in Europe of 
American productions, and the annual exports from the ifland 
amounted to about feven hundred thoufand pounds. 

The connexions of Martinico with the other iflands entitled her to 
the profits of commiflion, and the charges of iranfport, as flie alone 
was in the polfeffion of carriages. This profit might be rated at the 
tenth of the produce ; and the fum total mull have amounted to near 
feven hundred and fixty-five thoufand pounds : this ftanding debt was 
feldom calle^ in, and left for the improvement of their plantations ; 
it was increafed by advances in money, Haves, and other neceffary 
articles, fo that Martinico became daily more and more a creditor to 
the other iflands, and thus kept them in confl:ant dependence. 

The connexions of this ifland with cape Breton, Canada, and 
Louifiana, procured a market for the ordinary fugars, the inferior 
coffee, the molafles, and rum, which would not fell in France. In 
exchange the inhabitants received fait fifli, dried vegetables, deals, 
and fome flour. In the clandeftine trade on the coafls of Spanifti 
America, confifting wholly of goods manufaftured by the French na- 
tion, flie commonly made a profit of ninety per cent, on the value of 
about one hundred and feventy-five thoufand pounds, fent yearly to 
the Caraccas, or neighbouring colonies. 

Upwards of feven hundred and eighty-feven thoufand pounds 
were conftantly circulated in this ifland with great rapidity; and this 
is perhaps the only country in the world where the fpecie has been fo 
confiderable as to make it a matter of indifference to them whether 
they dealt in gold, filvcr, or commodities. This extenfivc trade 
brought into the po.ts of Martinico annually tv/o hundred fliips froni 
France ; fourteen or fifteen fitted out by the mother country for the 
coaft of Guinea, fixty from Canada, ten or twelve from the iflands of 
Margaretta and Trinidad, b^fules the Englifli and Dutch fhips that 
■:> came 


came to carry on a fmiiggling trade. The private navigation from 
the ifland to the northern colonies, to the opanilh continent, and to 
the windward illands, employed one hundred and twenty veffels^ 
from twenty to thirty tons burden. 

The war of 1744 put a Hop to this profpcrity : not that the fault 
xvas in Martinico itfelf ; its navy, conftantly exereifed, and accuf- 
tomed to frequent engagements, which the carrying on a contraband 
trade required, was prepared for aftion; In lefs than fix months, 
forty privateers, fitted out at St. Peter's, fpread themfelves about the 
latitude of the Caribbee iflands ; yet an entire flop was put to the 
navigation of the colony, both to the Spanifh coaft and to Canada, 
and they were conftantly difturbed even on their own coafts. The 
few fliips that came from France in order to compenfate the hazards 
they were expofed to by the lofs of their commodities, fold them at a 
very advanced price, and bought them at a very low one. 

When every thing thus feemed tending to decay, the peace at laft 
reftored the freedom of trade, and with it the hopes of recovering 
the ancient profperity of the ifland ; the event, however, did not 
anfweir the pains that were taken to attain it. Two years had not 
elapfed after the cefTation of hoflilities, when the colony loft the con- 
traband trade flie carried on with the American Spaniards. This lofs 
was not fo fenfibly felt by the colony as the hardfliips brought upon 
them by the mother country ; an unfliilful adminiftration clogged the 
reciprocal and neceflary conne£tion between the iflands and North- 
America with fo many formalitie.^, that in 1755 Martinico fent but 
four veflels to Canada. The direftion of its colonies, now commit- 
ted to the care of ignorant and avaricious clerks, it foon loll: its im- 
portance, funk into contempt, and was proftituted to Venality. The 
war broke out afrefh, and after a feries of misfortunes and defeats, 
the ifland fell into the hands of the Britlfli ; it was refliorcd in July 
1763, fixteen months after it had been conquered, but^deprived of all 
the neceflary means of profperity that had made it of fo much im- 
portance. The contraband trade carried on to the Spanifli coafts 
was almoft entirely loft, the ceflion of Canada to Great-Britain pre- 
cluded all hopes of opening again a communication, which had only 
been interrupted by temporary miftakes. The produftions of 
the Grenades, St. Vincent, and Dominica, which were now become' 
Britifli dominions, could no longer be brought into their harbours^ 
and a new regulation of the mother country, which forbad her 



having any intercourfe with Guadaloupe, left her no hopes from that 

The colony, thii? deprived of every thing as it were, and deftitute, 
Beverthtlefs contained, at the Jaft fiirvey, which was taken on the 
ftrft of January-, 1770, in the Gompafs of twenty-eight pariflies, 
twelve thoufand four hundred and fifty white people of all ages and 
of both fexes ; one thoufand eight hundred and fourteen free blacks 
pr mulattoes ; fex'enty thoufand five hundred and lifcy-thrce flaves ; 
and four hundred and forty-three fugitive negroes. The number of 
births in 1766, was in the proportion of one in thirty the 
white people, and of one in twenty-five among the blacks. 

The idand is fixteen leagues in length, and forty-five in circum- 
ference, leaving out the c.ipes, fonie of which extend two or three 
leagues into the fea ; it is very uneven, and interfeifted in all parts by 
a number of hillocks, which are moilly of a conical form. Three 
mountains rife above thele frnaller eminences ; the highert bears the 
indelible marks of a volcano ; the woods v.-ith which it is covered, 
continually attraft the clouds, v/hich occafinn noxious damps, and 
contribute to make it horrid and inacceffible, while the two others 
are in moft parts cultivated. From thefe mountains iflTuc the many 
fprings that water the illand ; tbele waters, which flow in gentle 
ftreams, are changed into torrents on the flighteft ftorm ; their quali- 
ties are derived from the foil over which they flow ; in foiBe places 
they are excellent, in others fo bad, thit the inhabitants are 
obhged to drink the water they have colieifted during the rainy 

Of all the French fettlements in the Weft-Indies, Martinico is the 
moft happily fituatedwith regard to the winds which prevail in thofe 
feas. Its harbours pofTefs the mofl ineftimable advantage of aflbrd- 
ing a certain flicker from the hurricanes which annoy thele latitudes. 
The harbour of Fort Royal is one of the beft in all the windward 
iflands, and fo celebrated for its fafety, that when it was open to the 
Dutch, their fliipmafters had orders from the republic to take flieltcr 
there in June, July, and Auguff, the three months in which the 
hurricanes are moft frequent. The lands of the Lamentin, which 
are but a league diftant, are the richeft and naoft fertile in the 
whole ifland. The numerous ftreams which water this fruitful 
country, convey loaded canoes to a confidcrahle diftancc froni thu; 
fea ; the protection of the fortifications feciire the peaceable eiijoy- 
jnent of fo many advantages, whi.';:h, however, are balanced by. a 
ypL.IV. Sf fw-impv 


fwampy and unwholefome foil. This capital of Martinico is alfo the 
rendezvous of the men of war, which branch of the navy has always 
opprefled the merchantmen. On this account Fort Royal was an 
improper place to become the center of trade, and was thererore re- 
rnoved to St. Peter's. This little town, notvvjthftandJng the fires that 
have four times reduced it to alhes, ftill contains one tlioufand feven 
hundred houfes. It is fituated on the weftern coaft of the ifland, on 
a bay or inlet, w hich is almoft circular ; one part of it is built on the 
llrand along the fea fide, which is called the anchorage, and is the 
place deftined for fliips and warehoufes : the other pnrt of tht town 
ilands upon a low hill ; it is called the Fort, from a fmall fortifii ation 
that was built there in 1665, ^^ check the ftditions of the inhabitants 
againft the tyranny oF monopoly, but ic now ferves to prote6f the road 
from foreign enemies ; thcle two parts of the town are feparated by 
'4 rivulet. 

The anchorage is at the b^ck of a pretty high and deep hill. Shut 
up as it were by ihis hill, which intercepts the eatlerly winds, the 
inofi: conftant and mod: ia'ubrious in thefe parts ; expoiedj with(^ut 
any refrefliing bieezes, to the fcorching beams of the lun, refleded 
from the hill, from the fea, and the black fand on the beach ; th s 
place is extremely hot, and always unwholefome ; bcfides, the ir. 
no harbour, and the fliips which caimoi winter fafe'y upon tliis coait, 
are obliged to take flielter at Fort Royal. But thefe difadrantages are 
compenlated by the conveniency of the road of St. Peicr's for load- 
ing and unloading of goods, and by ;t> fituation, which is fuch that 
fliips can freely go in and out at all times, and with all winds. 

G U A D A L O U P E. 

The middle of this iiland is feated in about north latitude 16" 30', 
weft longitude 6 1° 20'; it is of an irregular figure, may be about 
eighty leagqes in Cucnmfercn'.e, and is divided into two parts by a 
fmall arm of the fea, which is not above two leig.ies long, and from 
fil'teen to forty fathoms broad. This canal, known by the name of 
the Salt river, is navigable, but will only carry veffels of fifty tons 

That part of Uie ifland which gives its name to the wtiole colony, 
is, towards the center, full ot craggy rocks, where the cold is fo in- 
tenfe, that nothing will grow upon them but fern, and iome ufelefs 
flirubs covered with mofs. On the top of thefe rocks, a mountain 
tailed la Souphrierc, or the Brimftone mountain, rifes to an im- 



hienfe height ; it exhales, through various openings, a thick black 
Imoke, intermixed with fpirks that are viiible by night. From all 
thefe hills How numberlefs fpiings, which fertilize the plains below, 
and moderate the burning heat of the climate by a refrefliing ftream, 
fo celebrated, that the galleons which formerly ufed to touch at the 
Windward illawds, had orders to renew their provifion with this pure 
and falubrious water: fuch is that part of the illand properly 
called Gnadaloupe. That which is commonly called Grand Tcrre, 
has not been fo much favoured by nature ; it is indeed lefs rugged, 
but it wants fprings and rivers ; the foil is not io fertile, or the cli- 
mate fo wholefomc, or pleafant. 

No European n:uion had yet taken poflcffion of this iHand, when 
five hundred and fifty Frenchmen, led on by two gendemen named 
Loline and Duplefiis, arrived there from Dieppe on the 28th of June 
163 -. They had been very imprudent in their pn^pnrations ; their 
provifions were fo ill chofen, that they were fpoiied in the paffage, 
and they had fliipped fo few, that they were exhauflcd in two months : 
they were fupplied with more from the mother country. St.Chrif- 
topher's, whether ft'om fcarcity or defign, refufed to fpare them any, 
and the firll attenipts in hufciandry they made in the country, could 
not as yet afford any thing. No reiburce v/as left for the colony but 
from the favages, but the fupcrfluities of a people who cultivate but 
little, and therefore bad never laid up any ftores, could not be very 
confiderable. The new comers, not content with what the favages 
might freely and voluntarily bring, came to a refolution to plun* 
der them, and hoftilities commenced on the hxteenth of January, 

A dreadful famine was the confequence of this kind of War ; the 
colonifts were reduced to gra?,e in the fields, to eat their own excre- 
ments, and to dig up dead bodies tor their fubfiftcnce. Many who 
had been Haves at Algiers, held in abhoiTence the hands that had 
broken their fetters, and all of them curfcd their exiftencc. It was 
in this manner that they atoned for the crime of their invafion, till the 
government of Aubcrt brought a with the favages at the end of 
the year 1640. 

The few inhabitants who had cfcaped the calamities they had 
drawn upon themfelves, were foon jnined by lonjc difcontcnted co- 
loniils from St. Chriftopher's, by Europeans fond of novehv, by 
failors tired at navigation,- and by fome lea captains, who prudently 
ehofe to commit to the care of a grateful foil rht trcalurcs :hfv 

S f ^ hU 


had laved from the dangers of the fea. But ftill the profperity of 
Guadaloupe was (topped or impeded ky obftacles arifmg from its 

The facility with which the pirates from the neighbouring iflands 
could cairy off their cattle, their flaves, their very crops, frequently 
brought them into a deiper.ite fuuation. Intefline broils, arifmg 
from jealouliei of authority, often difturbed the quiet of the plan- 
ters. The adventurers who went over lo the Windward iflands, dif-- 
daining a land that was fitter for agriculture than for naval expedi- 
tion, were eafily drawn to Martinico by the convenient roads it 
abounds with. The protection of thofe intrepid pirates brought to 
that illand, all the traders who tlatrered themfelves that they might 
buy up the fpoiis of the enemy at a low price, and all the planters 
who thought they might iiifely give themfelves up to peaceful la- 
bours. This quick populatioii could not fail of introducing the civil 
and military government of the Caribbee iflands into Martinico. 
From that time the French minifiry attended more ferioufly to this 
than to the other coloniLS, which were not fo immediately under their 
direftion, and heating chietly of this iiland, they turned all their en- 
couragement that way. 

•It was in confecjuence of this preference^ that in 170c, the num- 
ber of inhabitants in Guadaloupe amounted only to three thoufand 
^jght hundred and twenty-five white people ; three hundred and 
twenty-five favages, free negroes, mulattoes ; and fix thoufand 
itvcn hundred and twenty-five flaves, many of whom were Ca- 

At the end of the year 1755, the colony was peopled with nine 
thoufand fix hundred and fo. ty-three whites, forty-one thoufand one 
hundred and forty liaves of all ages and of both fexes. Her faleable 
commodities were the produce of three hundred and thirty-four fugar 
plantations ; fittcen plots of indigo j forty-fix thoufand eight hundred 
and forty ficms of cacao ; eleven thoufand feven hundred of tobacco; 
two million two hundred and firry feven thoufand feven hundred and 
tvventy-fi\"e of coffee ;■ twelve million feven hundred and forty-eight 
thoufand four hundred and forty-feven of cotton. For her provi- 
lions file had twenty-nine; fquares of rice or mai/e, and one thoufand 
two hundred and nineteen of potatoes or yams; two million and 
twenty-eight thoufiuid five hundred and twenty banana trees, and 
thirty-two million five hundred and fevcnty-feven thoufand nine 
hundred and fifty trenches of cafl'ava. ITie cattle of Guadaloupo 


pi? GUADAtOtJPE. 31^ 

tonfifted of four thniifand nine hundred and forty-fix horfes ; two 
thouiand nine hundred and twenty-four mules ; one hundred and 
twcnty-fne aiTcs j thirteen thoufand IcVen hundred and fixteen head 
of homed cattle ; eleven thoufand one hundred and fixty-two flieep 
or goats, and two thoufand four hundred and forty-four hogs. Such 
was the ftate of Gu^daloupe when it was conquered by the Britilh in 
the month of April, 1759. 

The colony, with its dependencies, was reflored to France by thd 
treaty of peace in July, 1 763. 

By a furvey taken in 1767, this ifiand, including the fruallcr 
iflands, Del'eada^ St. Bartholomew, Marigalante, and the Saints, de- 
pendent upon it, contained eleven thouiand eight hundred and iixty- 
three white people ot all ages and of both fexes ; feven hundred and 
fifty-two free blacks and mulattoes ; feventy-two thoufand feven hun- 
dred and fixty-one flares ; which makes in all a population of eighty- 
five thoufand three hundred and feventy-fix fouls. The cattle con- 
fided of live thoufand and fixty horfes ; four thoufand eight hundred 
and fifty -four mules ; one hundred and eleven alfes ; feveateen thou- 
fand three hundred and feventy-eight head of horned catde; fourteen 
thoufand eight hundred and ninety-five flieep or goats, and two 
thoufand fix hundred and Cxty-nine hogs. The provilion was thirty 
million four hundred and feventy-fix thoufand two hundred and 
eighteen trenches of caffava ; two million eight hundred and nine- 
teen thoufand two hundred and fixty-two banana trees ; two thoufand 
one hundred and eighteen fquares of land planted with yams and 
potatoes. The plantations contained feventy-two arnotto trees ; three 
hundred and twenty feven of caflia ; thirteen thoufand two hundred 
and ninety-two of cacao ; five million eight hundred and eighty-one 
thoufand one hundred and feventy-fix of coffee ; twelve million one 
hundred and fiftj'-fix thoufand feven hundred and fixty-nine of cot- 
toa ; twenty-one thoufand four hundred and feveni'y-four fquares of 
land planted with fugar-canes. The woods occupied twenty-two 
thoufand and ninety-feven fquares of land ; there were twenty thou- 
fand two hundred and forty-feven in meadows, and fix thoufand 
four hundred and five uncultivated or foriaken. Only one thou- 
fand five hundred and eighty-two plantations grew cotton, coffee and 
provifions. Sugar was made but in four hundred and one. Th-fe fu- 
gar works employed one hundred and forty w:uei -mills, two hundred 
and fixty -three turned by oxen, and eleven wiii4-rhiUs. 



The produce of Guadaloupe, including what is poured in from 
the fmall iflands under her dominion, ougnt to t?e very confiderable j 
but in 1768, it yielded to the mother country no mvc than one 
hundred and forty thoufand four hundred and eighteen quintals of fine 
fugar ; twenty-three thouiand fix hundred and three quintals of raw 
fugar; thirty-four thouiand twD hundred and five quintals of coftee ; 
eleven thoufand n.'nf hundred and fifty-five quintals of cotton, four 
bundled and fifty-fix quintals of cacao; one thoiiiaiid eight hundred 
and eighty-four quintals of ginger j two thoufand fi\e hundred and 
twenty-nine quintals of logwood J twenty-four cherts of fweetmeats ; 
'one hundred and fiitty-five chefts of liquors; thirty-four caflcs of 
rum, and twelve hundred and two undrelfed fkins. All thefe com- 
modities Were fold in the colony only for three hundred and ten 
thoufand feven hundred and ninety-two pounds, eighteen {hillings 
and three pence ; and the merchandife it received from France- 
has coft but One hundred and ninety-feven thouiand nine bundled 
and nineteen pounds, eighteen fliillings and fix-pence ; but from that 
period it confidei-abiy increaled till the late troubles. 


Saint Lucia is about twenty-two miles long and eleven broad, the 
liiiddle of it lying in north latitude 39° 14', well longitude 27"^ o'^. It 
Vv'as firft fettled by the French in 1650, but was reduced by the Englifh 
in 1664, who evacuated it in 1666. The French immediately re- 
fettled the ifla.-id, but w6re again driven away by the Caribs. As 
foon as the lavages were gone the fornier inhabitants returned, but 
only fur a fliort time ; for being afraid of falling a prey to the firfl 
privateer that fliould vifit their coaftsj they removed either to other 
French iettlenients that were flronger, or which they might expe6i 
to be better defended. There was then no regular culture or colony 
at St. Lucia, it was only frequented by the inhabitants of Martinico, 
who catne th:ther to cut Xvood and to build canoes, and who had 
confidefable docks on the illand. In 1718 it was again fettled by 
the French ; but four years aftei', it was given by the court of Lon- 
tloii to the duke of Montague, who was fent to take poflTefiTion of it. 
This occafioned lome ditluibance between the two courts; which 
tvas fettled, however, by an agreement made in 1731, that, till the 
lefpedive claims fliould be finally adjufted, the illand fliould be 
evacuated by both nations, but that both fliould wood and watex* 
z there. 


K.liere. This precarious agreement furnifiied an opportunity for pri^ 
vate intercft to exert itlclf. Tiie EngUlli no longer molelled the 
French in their habitations, but empl.yeU them as their nffiftants in 
carrying on with richer colonies a Iniuggling trade, which the I'ub* 
jefts of both governments thought equally advantageous to them. 
This trade was more or lefs conliderable till the treaty of i76'^, 
when the property of St. Lucia was fecured to the crown of France* 
After that time the colony fionrifhed conlidcrably. In the beginning 
of the year 17725 the number of whitg people amounted to two 
thoufand and eighteen, men, women and children ; that of the 
blacks to lix hundred and fixty-iluee Irecmen, and twelve thoufand 
feven hundicd and ninety-five Uaves. There were feven hundred 
and fix dwelling pi.ices. The annual revenue at that time was about 
one hundred ?ud i'eventy-live thoqfand j)OU!ids, which, according 
to the .Vube Raynal, mull: have increaled one eighth yearly tor fomc 
tiire. It was taken by the Britift) fleet under admirals Byron and 
Barrington in the year 1778, but was reftored to France at ttie peace 
of 1783. 

The loil of St Lucia is tolerably good, even at the fea fide ; and 
IS much bctte' thai farther one advances into the country. The whcde 
of it is capable of cultivation, except fome high and craggy moun- 
tains, which bear evident marks of old volcaiioes. In one deep 
valley there are ftill eight or ten ponds, the water of which boils up 
in a dreadful manner, and retains fome of its heat at the diftance of 
fix thouland toifes from its refervoirs/ The air in the inland parts, 
like that of all other uninhabited countries, is foul and unwholefome, 
but grows lefs noxious as the woods are cleared and the ground laid 
open. On fome parts of the fea coaft tlie air is (till more unhealthy, 
on account of feme fmall rivers vvhich fpring fiom the foot of the 
mountains, and have not iufficient flopc to walh down the lands with 
which t ic influx of the ocean flops up their mouths, by vvhich means 
the', fpread themfejves into unwholefome marflies on the neighbour- 
ing grounds. 


Tobago is fituated in i:° odd minutes north latitude, one huiidre4 
and twenty miles fouth of Barbadoes, and abwut the fame diftance 
from the Spanifli main. It is about thirty-two miles in length and 
nine in breadth, fhe climate here is not fo hot as might he expeded 
fo near the equator ; and it is faid, that it lies out of the courle of 
thofe hunicanes that have fometimes proved f© fatal to the otlier 


Weft- India iflands. It has a fruitful foil, capable of producing fu^ 
gar, and indeed every thing elie that is raifed in the Weft-Indies, 
uith the addition, if we may believe the Dutch, of the cinnamon, 
nutmeg and gilm copal. It is well watered with numerous fprings ; 
and its bays and rivers are fo dilpofed as to be very commodioiis for 
all kind ot Paipping. The value and importance of this ifland ap- 
pears fi-om the expenfive and formidable armaments fent thither by 
European powers in fupport of their different claims. It feems to 
have been chiefly poffefl'ed by the Dutch, who defer>ded their pre- 
tenfions againft both England and France with the moft obftinate 
perfeverance^ By the treaty of Aix la Chapelle, in 1748, it v/as de? 
clartd neutral, though, by the tre:;ty of peace in 1763, it was yielded 
vp to Great-Britain ; but, in June, 1781, it was taken by the French^ 
and ceded to them by the treaty of 17B3. 


Are three fmall iflands lying in the neighbourhood of Antigua 
and St. Chriftopher's, and are of no great confequence to the French, 
except in time of war, when they give ftielter to an incredible num- 
ber of privateers, which greatly aimoy the Britiflv Weft-India trade* 
St. Bartholomew is now to be conlidered as belonging to the crown 
pf Sweden, being ceded to it by France in 1785, 



In noticing the Spanifli fettlpments in this part of the globe, we 
have already taken a general view of this ifland ; it only therefore 
remains to notice the French fettlements thereon. 

The French towns are, Cape Francois, the capital, containing 
feveral years ago, about eight thoufand whites and blacks. Leogane, 
though inferior in point of fize, is a good port, a place of conft<- 
derable trade, and the feat of the French government in that ifland. 
They have two other towns, conliderable for their trade, Peiit 
Guaves and port Louis. 

The following is faid to be an cxaft ftatement of the population, 
produ<S and commerce of the French colony of Hifpaniola in the 
year 1788, and may ferve to fliew the immenfe lofTcs fuftained by 
the late infurreftions of the negroes. 

Whites, tvVenty-f(pven thoufand feven hundred and feventeen ; free 
people of colour, twenty-one thoufand eight hundred and eight; 
fluves, four hundred and hvc thoufand five hundred and twenty-eight. 



The plantations were, of fugar, feven hundred and ninety-two ; 
of indigo, three thoufand and ninety-feven ; of cotton, feven hun- 
dred and five ; of coffee, two thoufand eight hundred and ten. The 
manufadories were, diftilleries, one hundred and feventy-three ; of 
brick and potter's ware, fixty-three ; of cacao, fixty-nine, and three 

Its produftions exported to France were, feventy millions two 
hundred and twenty-feven thoufand feven hundred and nine pounds 
of white fugar ; ninety-three millions one hundred and feventy-feven 
thoufand five hundred and eighteen ditto of brut ditto ; fixty-eight 
millions one hundred and fifty-one thoufand one hundred and eighty- 
one ditto of coffee ; nine hundred and thirty thoufand and fixteen 
pounds of indigo ; fix millions two hundred and eighty-fix thoufand 
one hundred and twenty-fix ditto of cotton ; and twelve thoufand 
nine hundred and ninety-five dreffed fkins. 

Sold to American, Englifli and Dutch fmugglers ; twenty-five 
millions of pounds of brut fugars ; twelve millions ditto of coffee ; 
and three millions ditto of cotton. 

The molaffes exported in American bottoms, valued at one mil- 
lion of dollars ; valuable wood, exported in French fliips, two 
hundred thoufand dollars. 

Its trade employed five hundred and eighty large (hips, carrying 
one hundred and eighty-nine thoufand fix hundred and feventy-nine 
tons, in which the imports amounted to twelve millions of dollars, 
of which more than eight millions of dollars were in manufadtured 
goods of France, and the other four millions in French produce. 

The Spanidi Ihips exported in French goods, or money, one mil- 
lion four hundred thoufaad dollars, for mules imported by them into 
the colony. 

Ninety-eight French fhips, carrying forty thoufand one hundred 
and thirty tons, imported twenty-nine thoufand five hundred and fix 
negroes, which fold for eight millions of dollars. 

The negroes in the French divifion of this ifland have, for feveral 
years part, been in a flate of infurredion. In the progrefs of thefe 
diflurbanccs, which have not yet fubfided, the planters and others 
have fuftained immenfe lofTes. As this unhappy affair has engaged 
much of the attention of the public, we are happy in being able to 
give a fummary ftatement of the caufes of this infurreflion.* 

* Froro a pam'ililet publilhcd in 1792, entitled, " An Inquiry into the Caufes of 
the Infurreftion of the Negroes, in the Ifland of St, Domingo." 

Vol. IV. ^ The 


The fituat'ion of the French colonies early attra(fled the atten- 
tion of the Conflituent Aflembly. At this time all was as tranquil as 
Juch a Jiate of opprejjton nuould permit. Political health can only be 
attributed to a country with a free conftitution. The fituation of the 
ifland is that of a paralytic ; one part is torpid, whilft the other 
is affefted with the frantic motions of St. Vitus's dance. 

The firft interference of the National Affembly in the affairs 
of the colonies, was by a decree of the 8th of March, 1790, which 
declared,! That all free perfons, who were proprietors and refidents 
of two years flantiling, and who contributed to the exigencies of the 
ilate, fhould exercife the rights of voting, which conflitute the qua- 
lity of French citizens. 

This decree, though in faft it gave no new rights to the peopl 
of colour, was regarded with a jealous eye by the white planters, 
who evidently faw that the generality of the qualification included all 
defcriptions of proprietors ; they affe6ted, however, to impofe a 
different conftru6lion upon it. The people of colour appealed to 
common juftice and common fenfe ; it was to no purpofe, the whites 
repelled them from their affemblies ; fome commotions eniued, in 
which they mutually fell a facrifice to their pride and refentment. 

Thefe difturbances again excited the vigilance of the National Af- 
fembly ; a decree was paiTed on the- 12th of Ottober, 1790, by 
which the AlTembly declared, as a conftitunonal article, *' That they 
would eftablifh no regulations refpe6ting the internal government of 
the colonies, without the precife and formal requell of the colonial 

Peace, however, was not the confequence of this decree. The 
proprietors, it is true, had obtained a legal right of tyrannizing, 
but the unfortunate queftion ftill recurred, Who firould be permitted 
to exercife that right ? On this head the decree was filent. New dif- 
fenfions arofe j each of the parties covered, under a factious patriotifm, 
the.mort atrocious defigns. Aflaffination and revolt became frequent. 
Mauduit, a French officer of rank, loft his life by the hands of his 
owm countrymen. At length the unfortunate Oge, a planter of co- 
lour, who had exerted himfelf in France in the caufe of his bre- 
thren, refolvcd to fupport by force their juft pretenfions. He landed 
in the Spanifli territory of St. Domingo, where he aflembled about 
fix hundred mulattoea. Before he proceeded to hoftilities he wrote 
10 the French general, that his defire was for peace, provided the 
laws were enforced. His letter was abfurdly confidered as a decla- 



satioa of war. Being attacked and vanquiflied, he took refuse 
amongft the Spaniards, who delivered him up to his adverfaries. 
The horrors of his death were the harbingers of future crimes. 
Thefe difturbances ftill increafing, the National Aflembly found it 
neceflary at length to decide between the contending parties. 

On the 15th of May, 1791, a decree was made, confifting of two 
articles, by the firft of which the Aflembly confirmed that of the 
lath of Odober, fo far as refpefted the flaves in their iilands. It is 
true, that the word flave was cautioufly omitted in this document, 
and they are only charafterifed by the negative defcription of " men 
not free," as if right and wrong depended on a play of words, or 
a mode of expreffion. 

This part of the decree met with but little oppofition, though it' 
paired not without fevere reprehenfion from a few enlightened 
members. The fecond article, refpeding the people of colour, was 
ftrongly contefted : thofe who were before known by the appellation 
of patriots divided upon it. It was, however, determined in the re- 
fult, that the people of colour, born of free parents, fhould be con- 
fidered as aftive citizens, and be eligible to the offices of government 
in the iflands. 

This fecond article, which decided upon a right that the people 
of colour had been entitled to for upwards of a century, inftead of 
reftoring peace, has been the pretext for all the fubfequent evils that 
the colony of St. Domingo has fuftained. They arofe not indeed 
from its execution, but from its counteradtion by the white colonifts. 
Had they, after the awfui warnings they had already experienced, 
obeyed the ordinances of an Aflembly they pretended to revere ; had 
they imbibed one drop of the true fpirit of that conftitution to 
which they had avowed an inviolable attachment; had they even 
fupprefled the diftates of pride in the fuggeftions of prudence, the 
ftorm that threatened them had been averted, and in their obedience 
to the parent Hate they had difplayed an ad of patriotifm, and pre- 
ferved themfelves from all poflibility of danger. 

But the equalization of the people of colour flung the irritable 
nerves of the white colonics. The defccndants of Jlaves viay lofe the 
r ef eminent i of their fathers ; lut the hatred of a defpot is hereditary* 
The European maxim allows, " That they never pardon who have 
done the wrong ;" but in the colonies this perverfity attains a more 
monftrous growth, and the averfion to African blood defcends from 
g«neration to generation. No fooner had the decree pafled, than the 

T t a deputiei 


deputies from the iflands to the National Aflembly withdrew their at- 
tendance : the colonial committee, always under the influence of the 
planters, fufpended their labours. Its arrival in the ifland ftruck the 
-whites with confternation : they vowed to facrifice their lives rather 
than fuffer the execution of the decree. Their rage originating in def- 
potifm and phrenzy carried them fo far that they propofed toimprifon 
the French merchants then in the ifland, to tear down the national 
flag, and hoift the Britijlj Jlandard in its place, whilft the joy of the 
mulattoes was mingled with apprehenfions and with fears. St. 
Domingo re-echoed with the cries of the whites, with their me- 
naces and blafphemies againft the conftitution. A motion was made 
in the ftreets to fire upon the people of colour, who fled from the 
city, and took refuge in the plantations of their friends and in the 
woods : they were at length recalled by proclamation ; but it was 
only to fvvear fubordination to the whites, and to be wltnefl*es of 
frefli enormities. Amidft thefe agitations the flaves had remained 
in their accullomed fubordination ; nor was it till the month of 
Augufl, 1 79 1, that the fymptoms of the infurredion appeared 
amongft them. 

A confiderable number, both of whites and people of colour, had 
loft their Kves' in thefe commotions before the flaves had given indi- 
cations of dilaffeftion ; they were not, however, infenfible of the 
opportunities of revolt aftbrded by the difl"enfions of their mafters ; 
they had learnt that no alleviation of their miferies was ever to be 
expe6led from Europe ; that in the fl:ruggle for colonial dominion, 
their humble interefts had been equally facrificed or forgotten by all 
parties. They felt their curb relaxed by the difarwiing and difper- 
lion of their mulatto matters, who had been aecuftomed to keep 
them under rigorous difcipUne. Hopelefs of relief from any quarter, 
they rofe in different parts, and fpread defolation over the ifland. If 
the cold cruelties of dcfpotifm have no bounds, what fliall be expet^ed 
from the paroxyfms of defpair ? 

On the I ith of September, 1791, a convention took place, which 
produced the agreement called the Concordat, by which the white 
planters ftijjulated, that they would no longer oppofe the law of the 
15th of May, which gave political rights to the people of colour. 
The colonial Aflembly even promifed to meliorate the fituation of the 
people of colour, born of parents not free, and to whom the decree of 
the 15th of May did not extend. An union was formed between the 
planters, which, if ithadfooner taken place, had prevented the infur- 



region. The infurgcnts were every where difph'ited, repulfed, and 
difperfed ; and the colony itfelf preserved from total deftru£tion. 

By a decree of the National Aflenibly, the 24th of September, the 
people of colour were virtually excluded from all right of colonial Ie» 
giflation, and exprefaly placed in the power of the white colonitls. 

If the decree of the i5ih of iVIay could inftigate the wh'te coloniils 
to the frantic afts of violence before defcribed, what fliall we fuppofe 
were the feelings of the people oi colour on that of the S4th of Sep- 
tember, which again blafted thofe hopes they had julily founde'^ oa 
the conftitutional law of the parent ftate, and the folemn ratificatija 
of the white colonifts ? Nofoonerwas it known in the iflands, ^ 1 
thofe diflenfions which the revolt of the negroes had for a while ap 
peafed, broke out with frefli violence. The apprehenfions enter- 
tained from the Haves had been allayed by the effeds of the Conccr- 
dat; but the whites no fooner found themfelves relieved from the 
terr«TS of immediate deftruftion, than they availed themfelves of the 
decree of the 24th of September; they formally revoked the Concor- 
dat, and treacheroufly refufed to comply with an engagement to 
which they owed their very exiftence. The people of colour were in 
arms ; they attacked the whites in the fouthern provinces ; they pof- 
fefled themfelves of Fort St. Louis, and debated their opponents in 
feveral engagements. A powerful body furrounded Port au Prince, 
the capital of the ifland, and claimed the execution of the Concordat. 
At three different times did the vhites alTent to the requifition, and as 
often broke their engagement. Gratified with the predile6lion for 
monarchy and ariftoeracy, which the Conftituent Affembly had in its 
dotage avowed, they affefted the appellation of patriots, and had the 
addrefs to transfer the popular odium to the people of colour, who 
were contending for their indisputable rights, and to the 
few white colonifts who had virtue enough to efpoufe their caufe. 
Under this pretext, the municipality of Port au Prince required M. 
Grimoard, the captain of the Boreas, a French line of battle fhip, to 
bring his guns to bear upon, and to cannonade the people of colour 
alPembled near the town : he at firft refufed, but the crew, deluded 
by the cry of patriotifm, enforced his compliance. No fooner was 
tkis meafure adopted, than the people of colour gave a loofe to their 
indignation ; they fpread over the country, and fet fire indifcrimi- 
nately to all the plantations ; the greatefl part of the town of Port au 
Prince foon after fhared the fame fate. Nothing feemed to remain for 
;he white inhabitants but to feek their fafety in quitting the colony. 


In the northern pgrts the people of colour adopted a more magna- 
nimous and perhaps a more prudent conduft. " They begun," fays 
Mr. Verniaud, " by offering their blood to the whites. *' We fliall 
wait,'* faid they, " till we have faved you, before we aflert our own 
claims.'* They accordingly oppofed themfelves to the revolted ne- 
groes with unexampled courage, and endeavoured to foothe them by 
attending to their reafonable requifitions. , 

After this recital of authentic and indifputable fa(5ts, it is not dif- 
ficult to trace the caufes of the infurreftion. The effects we leave to 
be defcribed by the profefled hiflorian ; but the prudent meafures of 
the French government we flatter ourfelves will ultimately fucceed in 
cxteading peace and liberty to every inhabitant of this, and all the 
other iilands under their dominion ; and may the godlike plan for 
the liberation and happinefg of the African, be fpeedily imitated by 
thofe governments in Europe who have not had fufficient virtue to fet" 
the example.* 

* In this account of the French Weft-India iilands it will no doubt be remarked, 
that we have taken no notice of the conqueft of feme of them by Great-Britain during 
the prefent war. The very great probability that they will foon acknowledge their for- 
iner dependency on France, and perhaps join in extending her viftories over fome of the 
Britifh iflands, muft be our excufe ; but if this is not deemed fufficient, we have only 
to remark, that the common prafl ice of fui rendering, as the price of peace, what has 
been purchafed during a war by a torrent of human blood, render it impoflible to fay 
what will, in a few months, belong to England or France. 


( z-^i ) 



•Situated in 17° 29' north latitude, and 63^ 10' weft longitude, 
and three leagues north-weft of St. Chriftopher 's, is only a moun- 
tain, about twenty-nine miles in compafs, riling out of the fea like 
a pyramid, and almoft round. But though fo Iraall and inconveni- 
ently laid out by nature, the induftry of the Dutch have made It 
to turn to very good account ; and it is faid to contain five thoufand 
whites, and fifteen thoujfand negroes. The fides of the mountains 
are laid out in very pxetty fettlements, but they have neither fprings 
nor rivers. They raife here fugar and tobacco ; and this ifland, as 
well as CuraiTou, is engaged in the Spanifli contraband trade, for 
which, however, it is not fo well fituated ; and it has drawn the fame 
advantage from its con^ant neutrality. But when hoftilities were 
commenced by Great-Britain againft Holland, Admiral Rodney was 
fent with a confiderable land and fea force againft St. Euftatiuf, 
which, being incapable of any defence, furrendered at difcretion, on 
3d of February, 1781. The private property of the inhabitants was 
confifcated, with a degree of rigour very uncommon among civilized 
nations, and very inconfiflent with the humanity and generofity by 
which the Englifli nation ufed to be charaftcrifed. The realbn af- 
figned was, that the inhabitants of St. Euftatius had aflifted the 
United States with naval and other ftcres. But on the zytl^of No- 
v&nber, the fame year, St. Euftatius was retaken by the French, 
under the command of the Marquis de Bouille, though their 
force confifted of only three frigates, fome fmall craft, and about 
three hundred men. 




This Ifland is lituated in twelve degrees north latitude, nine or 
ten leagues from the continent of Terra Firma, is thirty miles long, 
and ten broad. It feems as if it were fated, that the ingenuity and 
patience of the Hollanders fnould every where, both in Europe and 
America, be employed in fighting againft an unfriendly nature ; for 
the ifland is not only barren, and dependent on the rains for its water, 
but the harbour is naturally one of the worft in America ; yet the 
Dutch have entirely remedied that defe£l ; they have upon this har- 
bour one of the largeft and by far the mofl elegant and cleanly 
towns in the Weft-Indies. The public buildings are numerous and 
handfome ; the private houfes commodious ; and the magazines 
large, convenient, and well filled. A 11 kind of labour is here per- 
formed by engines ; fome of them fo well contrived, that fliips are at 
once lifted into the dock. 

Though this ifland is naturally barren, the induftry of the Dutch 
has brought it to produce a confiderabie quantity both of tobacco 
and fugar ; it has, befides, good fait works, for the produce of 
which there is a brifli demand from the Englifli iflands, and the colo- 
nies on the continent. But what renders this illand of mofl advantage 
to the Dutch, is the contraband trade which is carried on between the 
inhabitants and the Spaniards, and their harbour being the rendez* 
vous to all nations in time of war. 

The Dutch fliips from Europe touch at this ifland for intelligence, 
or pilots, and then proceed to the Spanifli coafts for trade, which 
they force with a ftrong hand, it being very difficult for the Spanifli 
guarda coflas to take thefe veflels ; for they are not only ftout fliips, 
with a number of guns, but are manned with large crews of chofen 
feamen, deeply interefted in the fafety of the veirel and the fnccefs of 
the voyage. They have each a fliare in the cargo, of a value pro* 
portioned to the fl:ation of the owner, fupplied by the merchants 
upon credit, and at prime coft:. This animates them with an un- 
common courage, and they fight bravely, becaufe every man fights 
in defence of his own property. Befides this, there is a confi:ant in- 
tercourfe between this ifland and the Spanifli continent. 

CuraiTou has numerous warchoufes, always full of the commodi- 
ties of Europe and the Eaft- Indies. Here are all forts of woollen and 
linen cloth, laces, filks, ribands, iron utenfils, naval and military 
ftores, brandy, the fpices of the Moluccas, and the calicoes of In- 
4 ^i*» 


rfta, white and painted. Hither the Dutch Weft-India, which is alfs 
their African Company, annually bring three or four cargoes of 
flaves ; and to this mart the Spaniards themfelves come in fmall vef- 
fels, and carry off not only the beft of the negroes, at a very high 
price, but great quantities of all the above forts of goods ; and the 
feller has thi? advantage, that the refufe of warehoufes and mercers' 
iliops, and every thing that is grown unfafliionable and unfaleable in 
Europe, go off here extremely well j every thing being fufHciently re- 
commended by its being European. The Spaniards pay in gold and 
filver, coined or in bars, cacoa, vanilla, jefuits bark, cochineal, and 
other valuable commodities. 

The trade of Curaflbu, even in times of peace, is faid to be an- 
nually worth to the Dutch no lefs than five hundred thoufand pounds ; 
but in time of war the profit is ftill greater, for then it becomes the 
common emporium of the Weil- Indies ; it affords a retreat to fliips 
of all nations, and at the fame time refufes none of them arms and 
ammunition to deftroy one another. The intercourfe with Spain 
being then interrupted, the Spanifh colonies have fcarcely any other 
market from whence they can be well fupplied either with flaves or 
goods. The French come hither to buy the beef, pork, corn, flour, 
and lumber, which are brought from the continent of North- Ame- 
rica, or exported from Ireland , fo that whether in peace or in war, 
the trade of this ifland flouriflies extremely. 

The trade of all the Dutch American fettlements was originally 
carried on by the Weftrlndia Company alone ; at prefent, fuch fliips 
as go upon that trade, pay two and a half per cent, for their licenfes j 
the company, however, refervc to themfelves the whole of what is 
carried on between Africa and the American ifiands. 

The other iflands, Bonaire and Aruba, are inconfiderable in them- 
felves, and fliould be regarded as appendages to Curaflbu, for which 
they are chiefly employed Jn raifing cattle and other provifions. 

The ifland of Saba, fltuated at no great diftance from St. Euftatiys, 
is ^all and hardly deferves to be mentioned. 


( 33° ) 




,N inconfiderable member of the Caribbees, fituafed in fixtV" 
four degrees weft long'Uide, and eighteen degrees north latitude, 
abour fifteen miles in circumference, and has a fafe and commodious 


Another fmall and unhealthy ifland, lying about five leagues eaft ' 
of St. Thomas, ten or twelv 'er.gues in length, and three or four 
where it is broadeft. Thefe iflands, fo long as they remained in 
the hands of the Danifh Weft-India Company, were ill managed, 
and of little confequence to the Danes ; but that wife and bene- 
volent prince, the late king of Denmark, bought up the company's 
ilock, and laid the trade open ; and fince that time the ifland of St. 
Thomas, as well as this, has been fo greatly improved, that it is faid 
to produce upwards of three thoufand hogflieads bf fugar, ofone thou- 
iand weight each, and other of the Weft-India commodities in tolerable 
plenty. In time of war, privateers bring in their prizes here for 
fale ; and a great many velTels trade from hence along the Spanifti 
main, and return with money in fpecie or bars, and valuable mer- 
chandife. As for Santa Cruz, from a perfeft defert a few years 
fince, it is beginning to fettle faft ; fcveral perfons from the Engliflx 
jilands, fome of them of great wealth, have gone to fettle there, and 
have received very great encouragement to do fo. 



The Dutch and the Danes hardly deferve to be mentioned among 
the proprietors of America j thupir poflcflions there are compara- 
tively nothing. But notwithftanding they appear extremely worthy 
of the attention of thefe powers, as the ihare of the Dutch only is 
worth to them at leaft fix hundred thoufand pounds a year. 


( 33^ ) 


J N a former part of this work * we have had occafion to offeF 
fome obrervations on the animals of America; by that account, 
for which we are indebted to the Abbe Clavigero, M. BwfFon, and 
the ingenious Mr. Jefterfon, it appears, that the continent of Ame- 
rica contains nearly cnc-half of the known fpecics of quadrupeds, 
fome of them common to North-America, and to the European 
and Afiatic parts of the eaflern continent, and others peculiar 
t© America : of thefe the greater part have not been accu- 
rately examined : it however appears, that thofe common to both 
eontinents are fuch as may be fiippofed to have migrated from one to 
the other. Comparing individuals of the fame fpecies inhabiting 
the different continents, fome are found perfeftly iimilar ; between 
others there is often found fome trivial difference in fize, colour, or 
other circumftances ; in fome inftances the European animal is larger 
than the American, in others the reverfe is true. A fimilar variety- 
Is often found among the fame fpecies in different parts of the fame 
continent ; this evidently arifes from the temperature of the climate, 
quantity of food furniflied in the parts they inhabit, and the degree 
of fafety and quiet poffeffcd ; the latter effe<fl is evident on thofe ani- 
mals hunted for their flefh or fur, fuch as the moofe deer, beaver, 
i\'c. which have gradually diminiflied in their lize wherever they 
have thus been diiliirbed ; bnt as we have neither a complete de- 
Icription nar complete catalogue extant, we are not warranted in 
making many obfei vations. It is very probabla, that many of the 
American quadrupeds are flill utterly unknown, and others known 
only by common report from hunters and others, and the informa- 
tion, thcMefoic, to be received u ith caution ; from this latter caufe 
has fpruug that multiplication and mifapplication of names, which 
t):is produced nuiuberlcfs cor.tradiifbions in the different writers on 
this fubjcdl. Our account will be little more than a catalogue, with 
A icw remarks on thofe in particular which conftitute that important 


* Pag' l;4, .Vc. of vol. i. 

JLl.AMA „ 


\ »> ' \^ 


trt^noh of commerce, thd fur trade^ or are in other refpeJh peculi- 
arly ufeful or curious. 


The lama is the oirncl of Peru and Chili; and, before the 
•conqueit of thole countries by the Spaniards, was the only beafl: 
of burden known to the Indians ; its difpofition is mild, gentle, 
and tra\3able. 

Before the introdu^flion of mules, thefe animals were ufed by the 
natives to plough tl>e land, and now icrve to carry burdens. They 
march flowly, and leklotr) accomplilh jonrnies of more than four or 
five leagues a day ; but what they want in fpeed is made up by per- 
feverance and indullry. They travel long journies in countries im- 
paffable to moft other animals, are very fure-footed, and are much 
employed in transporting the rich ores, dug out of the mineisof 
Potofi, over the rugged hills and narrow paths of the Andes. They 
lie down to be loaded, and, when weary, no blows can excite them 
to quicken their pace. They neither defend themfelves with their 
feet nor their teeth ; when angry, they have no other method of 
revenging injuries but by Jpitting ; they can throw out their faliva 
to the diftance of tea paces ; and if it fall on the (kin, it railes an 
itching, accompanied with a flight inflammation. Their fltfli is 
enten, and faid to be as good as mutton ; and of the hair of the wilti 
fort the Indians make cloth. 

Like the camel, they have the faculty of abftaining long frorri 
water, and, like that animal, their food is coarfe and trifling ; they 
are oieither allowed corn nor hay, green herbage, of v'hich they cat 
very moderately, being fuflicient for their nouriihmenf. 

The wild lamas, called guanacos, are llronger and more aftive 
than the don^eftic kind; they live in I erds, and inhabit- the higheft 
regions of the Cordelieres, and they run with great fuiftnefs in 
places of difficult accefs, where dogs cannot ealilv follow them. 

The Inma refemldes the camel in the form of its body, but is 
M^irhout the dorlal hunch; its head is fmall ami well Ihnped, it» 
neck long, and very protuberant near its junflion with tlie body ; ifi 
its domeftic ftatc its hair is fliort and fm(;oth, uhen wild it is coarfe 
and long, of a ye'lcy.'ifli colour; a black liiic runs along the top of 
the back, from the head to the tail. The tames ones vary in. co- 
lour; fome of them are white, others black, others of a mixed co- 
lour — white, grey and riifllt, difpeifcd in fpots : its tail is fliort, its 
ear; ar? four inches lougy its feet are ci>^vcl like thofe of the ox, 



and are armed behind with a fpur, by which the animal is enabled 
to foppoit itfelf on rugged snd difficult ground. The height of the 
iama is about xoar feet, and its length, from the neck to the tail, fix 


The tapiir is the hippopotamus of the new world, and has 
't)y fome authors been miftaken for that animal ; 5t inhabits the wood* 
and rivers on the eaitern fide of South-America, from the ifthmus 
'of Darien to the river of the Amazons. It is a foiitary animal, fleeps 
during the day, and goes out in the night in fearch of food; lives 
<?n grafs, fiigar-canes and fruits. If difturbed it takes to the water, 
fwims ^vith great crJe, or plunges to the bottom, andj like the hip- 
popotamus, walks there as on dry ground. 

It is about the fize of a fmall cow, its nofe is long and flendei", 
and extends far beyond the lower jaw, forming a kind of probofciS', 
which it •can coatradt or extend at pleafure ■; each jaw is furniftied 
with ten cutting teeth, and as many grinders ; its ears are fmall and 
c reft J Its body formed like that of a hog; its back arched; le^ 
fiiort; aitd honfs, of which it has four upon each foot, fmall, black 
and boUov.- ; its tail is very frcall ; its hair Ihort-, and of a dulky 
brown colcu-. It is rnild and moifenlive, avoids all hoililities with 
other animals, and flies from every appearance of danger. Its fitin, 
of which the Indians make bucklers, is very thick ; and when dried, 
is fo hard as to refift the impi-eiiion of an arrow. The natives eat 
Us flefl^, which is faid to be very good. 


Of this genUG, diffeieiit writeis have given an account of three 
diftinft fpecjes in America befides the common domefticated animal, 
viz. the BUFFALO, the mttsk, ind the bison, though it is doubtful 
whcthLT the fcrnier of thefe is any other than the bifon, and whether 
the variation between the neat cattle and the bifon is any thing more 
than the effed of domeftication ; we Ih^ll, uovvever, defcribe each 

of t lie 111. 

Buffalo. — Tlioiigh there is the moll flriking refemblance between 
this animal uiid the common ox, both in regard to form and nature, 
their habits and propcnfuies being nearly fimilar, are both equally 
fubmiifive !o the yoke, and may be employed in the fame domeftic 
ferviccs ; yet it is certain, from experience, that no two animals can, 
m reality, be more diftinft : the cow rcfufes to breed with the buffalo, 
z while 


BUFJFAIjO Tjiaj^. 


yfhWt it is known to propagare with the biibn, to which it bears, in 
point of form, a much more diftant fimilitude. 

Mr. Umphreville, who ftates this animal to be a native of Hiid- 
fon's bay, gives the following account of the manner jji which tl>e 
Indians take it: " The Indians have various ways of killing the 
buffalo ; one of which is by cautioufly approaching them when feed- 
ing. The hunter, upon this occafion, lies on his belly, and vvill 
fometimes fire his gun forty or fifty times \yithput raifmg the herd. 
They alfo purfue them on horfeback, and flioot them with arrows 
and guns. But the means by which the greateft numbers are takeii 
is by making a pound, which is conflru(5ted in the followirig manner; 
— •' They are either of a circular or fquare form, and differ accord- 
ing to the manner of the nation by whom they are made. The 
fquare ones are compofed of trees laid on one another, to the height 
of about five feet, and about fifty on each fide of the fquare. On 
that fide at which the animals are intended to enter aquantitv of earth 
is laid, to the height of the c»nfiru(5lion, fo as to form a hill of an 
eafy afcent of about twenty feet. This done, a number of branches 
of trees are placed, from each fide of the front, in a ftrait line from 
the raifed hill, for about one hundred feet in length, continually in- 
creafing in width, fo that though the inv> ard ends of tiiefe lines of 
branches are no more than fifty feet afunder, the exterior end wiU 
exceed two hundred feet. After this, a number of poles, neuly 
fifteen feet long each, are placed at about twelve feet diftance from 
each other, with a piece of buffalo dung on the top, and in a ftrait 
line from the boughs above mentioned. At the foot of each pole a 
man lies concealed in a buffalo fkin, to keep the animals in a Ih-ait 
direftion to the pound. Thefe poles are placed alike on each fide, 
always increafing in breadth from one fide to the other, and decreaf- 
ing in the fame proportion as the animals approach the pound. Eveiy 
preparation being now made, three or four men fet off on foot to 
find a herd of cows, for the bulls they think not worth their trouble : 
thefe they drive eafily along, till they arrive within the vicinity of 
the pound, when one man is difpatched to'give notice to the otlicr 
Indians, who immediately alfemble on horfeback on each fide the 
herd, keeping a proper diilance, for fear of frightening the ani- 
mals. By this means they are conduced within the exterior line of 
poles. It frequently happens that they will endeuvour to go out ; to 
prevent which, the men who are placed at the foot of eacii pole flnkc 
their (kins, which drives the herd to the oppofite fide, -vhere the 



others do tbe fame ; fo that at laft they arrive at the pound, and fait 
in headlong one upon another, fome breaking their necks, backs^ 
&c. And now the confufion becomes fo great within, that though 
the height of the building fliall not exceed five feet, none will make 
their efcape. To elucidate this defcription of the buffalo pound, wq 
^ave annexed a reprefeatation. 

Mnjh, — The muik bull inhabits the interior parts of North- Ameri^a^ 
en the weft fide of Hudfon's bay, between Churchill and Seal rivers. 
They are very numerous in thofe parts, and live in herds of twenty 
cr thirty. The Indians eat their flefli, a,nd make coverings of their 
Jkins. They are brought down in fledges to fupply the forts during 
the winter. Notwithftanding the fiefh is faid to have a ftrong flavour 
of mulk, it is reckoned very good and whulefome. 

It is fomewhat lower than a tleer, but move bulky ; its legs are\ 
fliort, and it has a fmall hump on its fliouider; its hair is of a dufty 
red colour, very fine, and fo long as to reach to the ground ; be- 
neath the hair its body is covered with wool of an afli colour, which 
jiS exquifltely fine, and might be converted into various articles of 
lifefui nianuFufSlure — rvlr.vjerenue fays, that ftocjcings made of it are 
finer than 01k ; its tail is only three inches long, and is covered with 
long hairs, of which the Elquimaux Indians make caps, \vhich are 
fo contrived, that the long hair, falling round their faces, defends, 
them froni the bites of the mufquitoes. Its horns are clofe at the 
bafe, and bend downwards, turning out at the points ; they are two 
feet long, and tvvo feet round yt the bafe j fome of them will weigh 
fixty pounds. 

Thefe animals delight chiefly in rocky and mountainous countries j 
they run nim.bly, and are very active in climbing deep afcents. 

E'ifon.—T\\\% animal, often called, though improperly, the buffalo, is 
bv fome fuppofed to be the fame fpecies as the common domefticated 
Animi^l. Compared with the neat cattle, however, the bifop is con- 
fiderably larger, efpecially about the fore parts of his body. Op, his. 
flroulders arifes a large fielLy or grifly fubltance, which extendsi 
along the back. The hair on his head, neck and flioulders, is long 
and woolly, arjd all of it is fit to be fpun or wrought into hats. 
Calves from the domeilic cow and wild bull are fometimes raifed ; 
but when they grow up, they become fo. wild that no common fence 
will confine them. 

Thcfe nniinals were once exceedingly numerous in the wellem 
parts of Virginia and Fcnnfylvania ; aud fo late as the year J76,6j 





herds of four hundred were frequently feen in Kentucky, and from 
thence to the MifTiffippi : they are likewife common in fome parts of 
Hudfon's bay. 


Of this genus the American forefts abound with almoft all the va- 
rieties known, and in the greateft plenty ; to elucidate this faft, we 
have only to confider the vaft quantities of their (kins annually im- 
ported into Europe : it will, however, be unneceflary to defcribe the 
varielies of the different fpecies ; we fliall, therefore, only notice a 
few of the mod: particular. 

Great Sfa::, or round horned FAJ;. — Of this animal there never has 
yet been a good defcription ; the figure we have given of it in the 
preceding plate is from a reprefentatioii profefled to be taken from 
a living one brought from the interior of North- Ameiica : it ap- 
pears to have been drawn at the time it had flicd its horns, and at 
about five years old ; it is however aflerted, that it does not attain 
its full growth under twenty years. The defcription given of the 
above is as follows : 

At the age of five years, the length of this creature was nine feet, 
from the end of the muzzle to the infertion of the tail, the head and 
neck being extended in a line with the body ; its height at the 
flioulder was four feet fix inches ; length of the head one foot fi;x 
inches ; breadth over the forehead itstn inches ; length of the fore 
legs two feet five inches ; length of the neck two feet fix ; its ea^s 
nine iiiches ; and tail three. Its horns, which it had juft (lied, are • 
not palmated like thofe of the moofe ; they are large, and, when 
full grown, meafure above fix feet from tip to tip. The antlers are 
round and pointed at the ends, the lowermoft antler forms a curve 
downward over each eye, to which it appears a defence. Its hair 
was long, of a dark dun colour on the back and fides ; on the head 
and legs dark brown ; its eyes full and lively ; and below each eye 
there is a deep flit, about two inches in length, the ufe of which we 
are unable to difcover. 

It was very lively and a<flive, (jf great ftrength of body and 
limbs ; its hoofs fliort, and like thofe of a calf; the divifion between 
them is lefs than in thofe of the rein-deer, and, when the animal is 
in motion, they do not make a rattling noife : it has no mane, but the 
hair under its neck is longer than that on any other part of the body.'* 

Vol. IV. X x Moofe. 


Moofe. — Of thefe there are two kinds, the black and the grey* 
The black are faid to have been from eight to twelve feet high ; at 
Jjrefent they are very rarely feen. The grey moofe are generally aa 
tall as a horfe, and fome are much taller ; both have fpreading pal- 
mated horns, weighing from thirty to forty pounds ; thefe are flicd 
annually, in the month of February, They never run, but trot 
with amazing fpeed. In fummer they feed on wild graifes, and the 
leaves of the moil mucilaginous flirubs. In winter they form herds ; 
and when the fnow falls, by moving conftantly in a fraall circle, 
they tread the fnow hard, and form what is called a pen. While the 
fnow is deep, and will not bear them, they are confined within this 
pen, and eat all the bark and twigs within their reach. They are 
confidered as of the fame fpecies with the elk of the eaftern conti- 
nent. They are found in New-England, Canada, Hudfon's bay, 
Nova-Scotia, and on the northern parts of the Ohior 

CartboUi or Rein Deer. — This animal is diftinguiflied by its 
branching palmated horns, with brov/ antlers. From the tendons 
of this animal, as well as of the moofe, the aboriginal natives made 
very tolerable thread. It is found in the diftri6t of Maine, and in 
the neighbourhood of Hudfon's bay, where they are in great herds. 
Columns of many thoufands annually pafs from north to fouth in the 
months of March and April. In that feafon the mufquifoes are 
very troublefome, and oblige them to quit the woods, and feek re- 
frefliment on the Ihore and open country. Great numbers of beafts 
of prey follow the herds. The wolves fingle out the ftragglers, de- 
tach them from the flock, and hunt them down : the foxes attend 
at a diftance, to pick up the offals left by the former. In autumn 
the deer, with the fawns bred during the fummer, remigrate north- 

Siag^ or Red Deer. — This is the moft beautiful animal of the deer 
kind. The elegance of his form, the lightnefs of his motions, the 
flexibility of his limbs, his bold, branching horns, which are an- 
nually renewed, his grandeur, flrength and fwiftnefs, give him a 
decided pre-eminence over every other inhabitant of the forefl-. 

The age of the flag is known by its horns : the firft year exhibits 
only a fliort protuberance, which is covered with a hairy fkin ; the 
next year the horns are llraight and fingle ; the third year produce* 
two antlers, the fourth three, the fifth four ; and, when arrived at 
the fixth year, the antlers amount to fix or feveu on each fide, but 
the number is not always certain, 

c Of 


Of this fpecies America furniflies feveral varieties, one of which, 
found on the borders of the Ohio river, is very large, and com- 
monly confidered as a fpecies of the elk. 

Fallozv Deer. — The principal difference between the flag and the 
fallow deer feems to be in their fize and in the form of their horns, 
the latter being much fmaller than the former, and its horns, inftead 
of being round, like thofe of the flag, are broad, palmated at the 
ends, and better garnifhed with antlers : the tail is alfo much longer 
than that of the flag, and its hair is brighter ; in other refpefts they 
nearly refemble each other. 

The horns of the fallow deer are flied annually, like thofc of the 
flag, but they fall off later, and are renewed nearly at the fame time. 

They aflbciate in herds, which fometimes divide into two parties, 
^•nd maintain obftinate battles for the pofleflion of feme favourite 
part of the park : each party has its leader, which is always the 
oldeft and ftrongeft of the flock ; they attack in regular order of 
battle; they fight with courage, and mutually fupport each other ; 
they retire, they rally, and feldom give up after one defeat : the 
combat is frequently renewed for feveral days together ; till, after fe- 
veral defeats, the weaker party is obliged to give way, and leave the 
contjuerors in polTeflion of the obje£l of their contention. 

In the United States thefe animals are larger than in Europe, of a 
different colour, and fuppofed by fome to be a different fpecies : they 
are found in plenty from Canada over all parts of North-America 
to Mexico. 

I\oe. — The roe is the fmalleft of all the deer kind, being only 
three feet four inches long, and fomewhat more than two feet in 
height : the horns are from eight to nine inches long, upright, round, 
and divided into three branches : the body is covered with long hair ; 
the lower part of each hair is afli colour, near the end is a narrow 
bar of black, and the point is yellow ; the hairs on the face are 
black, tipped with afh colour ; the ears are long, their infides of a 
pale yellow, and covered with long hair; the chef>, belly, legs, 
and infide of the thighs, are of a yellowiih white ; the rump is of a 
pure white, and the tail very ihort. 

The form of the roebuck is elegant, and its motions light and 
eafy. It bounds feemingly without effort, and runs with great fwift- 
nefs. When hunted, it endeavours to elude its purfuers by the moft 
fubtle artifices ; it repeatedly returns upon its former fteps, till, by 
various windings, it has entirely confounded the fcent. The cun- 

X X * ning 


ning animal then, Tsy a fudden fpring, bounds to one fide ; r.nd, 
lying dofe dcwia upon its belly, permits the hounds to pafs by, with* 
out offering to ftir. 

They do not keep together in herds, like other deer, but live in 
feparate families: the fire, the dam, and the young ones, affociate 
together, and feldom mix with others. 

In America the roe deer is more common than in Europe, and in 
Louifiana it is much larger. 

The defcripticn of the two following animals are taken from 
Umphreville's Hiftory of Hudfon's Bay, and are given in 
his own words : 

*' Jumping Deer.— This animal, though not half the fize of the red 
deer, is not the fmalleft of the fpecies. The one under defcription 
receives its name from the Angular manner of its courfe ; this is by 
a continual fuccelfion of jumps, which they perform with amazing 
celerity, fpringing at the diilance of fifteen or fixteen feet at a jump. 
It is a fmall, clean-made animal, exceeding lively and gay, and is of 
a brown colour intermixed with grey hairs ; its food confifts of grafs, 
of the fallen leaves of the poplar, the young branches of different 
kinds of trees, and the mois adhering to the pines. The horns 
are about two feet long, and refemble thofe of the red deer, 
except in fize ; they fall oft" in the month of April. This handfome 
animal ruts in November, brings forth in May, and has one and 
fometimes two at a birth. It is needlefs to add that the fieflt is deli- 
cious. There are two other kinds of the jumping deer, one of which 
has a very lliort tail like the reft of the fpecies, whereat the other 
kind has a tail about a foot long, and covered with red hairs. 

'■'■Jp! i-to-chik^o-JhiJ}:>. — lam not fufficiently converfant in the faience 
of zoology to give this beautiful animal its proper name in the Eng- 
lifli language; perhaps it has never yet been defcribed in natural 
hiftory. The French people refident in thefe parts call it the Cu 
Blanc, from a white mark on its rump. A more beautiful creature 
is not to be found in this or perhaps any other country ; extreme 
delicacy of make, and exa6l fimilarity of pro])ortion, are obfervable 
in all its parts ; no animal here is fo fwift of foot, not the fleeteft 
horfe or dog can approach it. They herd together in large droves, 
but fometimes three or four only are found in a place. Its horns 
are not ollified like the other fpecies, nor are they branched ; both 
male and female have them, but they never fall off ; they refemble 
more the horns of the goat than thofe of the deer fpecies. They feed 



upon xpoA kinds of grafs, and the tender twigs of trees. The whole 
length may be about four feet and a half ; the legs are white and 
flender; the reft of the body a light red, with a white fpace on 
the rump." 


Broivn Bear. — There are two principal varieties of the bear, the 
brown and the black ; the former is found in almoft every cliinate, 
the black bear, chiefly in the forells of the noithcrn regions of Eu- 
rope and America. 

The brown bear is fomethnes carnivorous, but its general food is 
roots, fruits, and vegetables. 

It is a favage and folitary animal, lives in defert and unfrequented 
places, and chufes its den in the moft gloomy and retired parts of the 
foreft, or in the mod dangerous and inacceffible precipices of unfre- 
quented mountains. In America it is chiefly found to the north- 
weft of Hudfon's bay, and the weftern fide of the continent. It is 
likewife found about Nootka found, and the Andes of Pern. It re- 
tires alone to its den about the end of autumn, at which time it is ex- 
ceedingly fat, and lives for feveral weeks in a ftate of total inaftivity 
and abftinence from food. During this time the female brings forth 
her young and fuckles them ; flie chufes her retreat for that purpofe 
in the moft retired j:^ces, apart from the male, left he fliould devour 
them ; flie makes a warm bed for her young, and attends them with 
unremitting care during four month=, and in all that time fcarcely 
allows herfelf any nourifhment. She brings forth two, and fome- 
times three young at a time. The cubs are round and flaapelefs, 
with pointed muzzles : at hrft they do not exceed eight inches in 
length ; they are blind during the flrft four weeks, are of a pale, yel- 
low colour, and have fcarcely any refemblance of the creature when 
arrived at maturity. The time of geftation in thefe animals is about 
fix months, and they bring forth in the beginning of January. 

In the fpring, the old bears, attended by their young, come out 
from their retreats, lean, and almoft famifned by their long confine- 
ment. They then ranfack every quarter In fearch of food ; they fre- 
quently climb trees, and devour the fruit in great quantities, parti- 
cularly the date plum tree, of which they. are exceedingly fond ; they 
afcend thefe trees with furprifing agility, keep them(;lves firm on the 
braiiches with one paw, and with the other collet the fruit. 



The bear is remarkably fond of honey, which It will encounter 
great difficulties to obtain, and feeks for with great cunning and 

It enjoys in a fuperior degree the fenfes of hearing, fmelling, and 
touching. Its ears are fhort and rounded, and its eyes fmall, but 
lively and penetrating, and defended by a nictating membrane : from 
the peculiar formation of the internal parts of its nofe, its fenfe of 
fmelling is exceedingly exquifite; the legs and thighs are ftrong and 
iviufcular ; k has five toes on each foot, and ufes its fore feet as a 
hand, although the toes are not feparated as in moft animals that do 
fo ; the largefi finger is on the outfide. 

The voice of the bear is a deep and furly kind of growl, which 
it frequently exerts without the leaft caufe. It is very eafily irrita- 
ted, and at that time its refentment is furious, and often caprici- 
otilly exerted. 

When tamed, it appears mild and obedient to its mafter, but it is 
jiot to be trufled without the utmoft caution. It may be taught to 
walk upright, to dance, to lay hold of a poll with its paws, and per-f 
form various tricks. But to give the bear this kind of education, it 
mufl be taken when young, and accuftomed early to reftraint and 
difciplrne ; an old bear will fuffer neither without difcovering the 
rrioft furious refentment ; neither the voice nor the menaces of 
"his keeper have any e{fe<ft upon him ; he equally growls at the 
liand that is held out to feed, as at that which is railed to correct 

B.'ack Bear. — Of this animal there are two forts found in the nor- 
thern States ; both are black, but different in their forms and habits. 
One has fhort legs, a thick, clumfy body, is generally fat, and is 
Tery fond of fweet vegetable food, fuch as fweet apples, Indian 
corn in the milk, berries, grapes, honey, &c. Probably he is not 
carnivorous. As foon as the firfl: fnow falls, he betakes himfelf ta 
his den. v/iii':h is a hole in a cleft of rocks, a hollow tree, or fome 
fT>ch place; here he gradually becomes torpid, and dozes away the 
winter, fucking his paws, and expending the Hock of fat which he 
liad previoully acquired. 

The other fort is diitinguiflaed by the name of the Ranging bear, 
and Isems to be a grade between the preceding and the wolf. His 
legs are longer, and his body more lean and gaunt. He is carnivo- 
rous, frequently delirroying calves, flicep, and pigs, and fometimes 
children. In winter he .migrates to the fouthvvard. The former ap- 

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Jpcajs to be the common black bear of Europe ; the latter correfponds 
to the brown bear of the Alps, and Is found in all parts of America. 

Polar, or Great JFhit€ Bear. — This animal ciitilrs greatly from the 
common bear in the length of its head and neck, and gtows to above 
twice the fize. Some of them are thirteen feet long ; its limbs are of 
great fizc and ftrength ; its hair long, harfli, and difagreeable to the 
touch, and of a yellow i(h white colour ; its ears are fliort and 
rounded, and its teeth large. 

It inhabits only the coldefl: parts of the globe, and has been found 
above latitude eighty, as far as navigators have penetrated northwards. 
Tliefe inhofpitable regions feem adapted to its fullen nature. 

It has been feldom feen farther fouth than Newfoundland, but 
abounds chiefly on the fhores of Hudfon's bay, Greenland, aod 
Spitzbergen, on one fide, and thofe of Nova Zembla on the other. 
It has been fometimes found in the intermediate countries of Norway 
and Iceland; but fuch as have appeared in thofe parts have always 
been driven thither upon floating flieets of ice, fo that thofe countries 
are only acquainted with them by accident. 

U^oh'erene — called in Canada the Carcajou, and by hunters, the 
Beaver Eater, feems to be a grade between the bear and the wood- 
chuck. He agrees nearly with the badger of Europe. His length 
is one foot and a half and upwards ; his circumference nearly two 
feet ; his head and ears refemble a woodchuck's ; his legs fliort ; feet 
and paws large and ftrong ; tail about feven inches long, black, and 
very bufliy or fliaggy ; hair about two- inches long, and very coarfe ; 
his head fallow grey ; back, almoft black ; breafl:, fpotted with 
white; belly, dark brown ; fides and rump, light reddifli brown. 
This animal lives in holes, cannot run fail, and has a clumfy appear- 
ance. He is very mifchievous to hunters, following them when fet- 
ting their traps, deftroying their game, particularly the beaver; found 
as far north as the Copper river; and fouth, as the country betweea 
lake Hudfon and lake Superior ; and on the weflern fide of North- 
America, in Canada, and the northern States they ere very numerous. 

Raccoon — This animal is found in all the temperate parts of North- 
America. It is found alfo in the mountains of Jamaica, from whence 
great numbers of them frequently defcend into the plantations, and 
make great havoc among the fugar canes, of which they are particu- 
larly fond. The planters confider thefe aninuUs as their grcatefl ene- 
mies, as they frequently do infinite mifchief in one night's excurfion : 
they have contrived various methods of deftioyi.ig them, yet ftilJ 



they propagate in fuch numbers, that neither traps nor fire arms cart 
repel them. 

The raccoon is fomewhat lefs than the badger : its head refembles 
that of a fox, but its ears are round and much fliorter, and its upper 
jaw very pointed, and longer than the lower : its eyes, which are 
large, are furrounded with two broad patches of black ; its body is 
thick and fliort, covered with long hair, black at the points, and grey 
underneath ; its tail is long and bufliy, and marked with alternate 
rings of black and white ; its feet and toes are black. 

The raccoon is very adive and nimble : its claws, which are ex- 
tremely fliarp, enable it to climb trees with great facility. It moves 
forward chiefly by bounding, and though it proceeds in an oblique 
direi5lion, runs very fwiftly. 


JFoI/.— Of thh animal, which is of the dog kind, or rather the dog 
himfelf in his favage ftate, there are in America great numbers, and 
a confiderable variety in fizeand colour. The dimenfions of a fkin, 
meafured for writing tliis account, were as follows : length of the 
body five feet ; the fore legs eighteen inches ; of the hind legs fifteen 
inches; of the tail eighteen inches. The circumference of the body 
was Irom two feet and a half to three feet. The colour of thefe 
animals in the northern States is generally a light dirty fallow, with a 
lift of black along their back. In fome, the black is extended down 
their fides, and Ibmetimes forms waving ftreaks ; others are faid to 
be fpotted : fome of them, particularly in the fouthern States, are 
entirely black, and coniiderably fmaller. The Indians are faid to 
have fo far tamed fome of thdfe animals before their acquaintance 
with the Europeans, as to have ufed them in hunting. They next 
made ufc of European dogs, and afterwards of mongrels, the off- 
fpring of the wolf and doc, as being more docile than the former, and 
more eager in the chafe than the latter. The appearance of many of 
the dogs, in the newly-fettled parts of the United States, indicate their 
relation to the wolf. They are found from Hudfon's bay to the molt 
fouthern parts of North-America, and in mofi, of the fouthern States, 
they are numerous. 

Fox.— Of the foxes, there are in America a great variety ; fuch as 
the Silver Fox,* Red Fox> Grey Fox, Crofs Fox, Brant Fox> and 

••'■ M. Buffopi is of opinion tha*. this is the lUih, or Ar£\ic dog. 


Jaguar o 

, >:s~ >il r #*^ ^^^ '^^ ,._Jp^--> ^^-- 


fcvcral others. Naturalifts have generally fuppofed that there is more 
than one fpecies of foxes, but they differ very much in their mode of* 
arranging them. It is highly probable, however, that there is but 
one fpecies of thefe animals, as they are found in all their varieties 
of fize, and of fliades varioufly intermixed, in different parts of the 
United States, Foxes and other animals furniflied with fur, in the 
Dorthern parts, are larger than thofe of the fouthern. 


Catamount. — This animal, the moft dreaded by hunters of any of 
the inhabitants of the forefts, is rarely feen, which is probably the 
reafon why no account of him has ever been pubiiflied, to our know- 
ledge, except what is contained in a letter of Mr. Colinfon's to M, 
de Buffon. The dimenfions of one, killed a few years ago, in New- 
Hampfliire, as nearly as could be afcertained by the Ikin, were as- 
follows : the length of his body, including the head, lix feet ; cir- 
cumference of his body two feet and a half; length of his tail three 
feet, and of his legs about one foot. The colour, along his back, is 
nearly black ; on his fides, a dark reddifli brown ; his feet black. He 
feems not calculated for running, but leaps with furpriling agility. 
His favourite food is blood, which, like other animals of the cat 
kind, he takes from the jugular veflels of cattle, deer, &c. leaving 
the carcafe. Smaller prey he takes to his den ; and he has been 
known to carry off a child. He feems to be allured by fire, which 
terrifies all other carnivorous animals, and betrays no fear of either 
man or beaft. He is found in the northern and middle States, and' 
moft probably in Hudfon's bay. 

Jaguar, — The Jaguar is the moft formidable animal of the nev/ 
continent, rather larger than the panther, with hair of a bright 
lawny colour. The top of the back is marked with long ftripes of 
black, the fides beautifully variegated with irregular oblong fpots, open 
in the middle ; the tail not fo long as that of the ounce, and irre- 
gularly marked with large black fpots. 

It is found in the hotteft parts of South- America, is very fierce, 
and when preffed with hunger, will fometimes venture to feize a 

The Indians are much afraid of it, and think it prefers them to the 
white inhabitants, who, perhaps, are better prepared to repel its at- 
tacks. In travelling through the deferts of Guiana, they light great 
fires in the night, of which thefe animals are much afraid. 

Vol. IV. Y y They 


They howl dreadfully ; their cry, which is expreflive of the tw© 
monoryllables, hou^ hou^ is fomevvhat plaintive, grave, and ftrong, 
like that of an ox. 

The ant eater, though it has no teeth to defend itfelf with, is the 
iTioft cruel enemy the jaguar hr;s to encounter. As foon as the jaguar 
attacks this little animal, it lies down on its back, and with its long 
claws feizes and fuffocates him. 

Couguai\--T\i\z nnimal is called by fome the Paw/z, ox American 
L'ton^ but differs fo much from that noble animal, as not to admit of 
any comparifon. Its head is fma! I, it has no mane, its length, from 
nofe to tail, is five feet three inches, the tail two feet. The predo- 
minant colour is a lively red, mixed with black, efpecially on the 
backj where it is darkcfl : its chin, its throat, and all the inferior 
parts of the body, are whitifli : its legs are long, claws white, and the 
outer claw of the fore feet much longer than the others. 

It is found in many parts of North-America, from Canada to Flo- 
rida : it is alfo -common in Guiana, Brafil, and Mexico. 

It is fierce and ravenous in the extreme, and will fwim rivers to 
attack cattle, even in their inclofures. In North- America, its fury 
feems to be fubdued by the rigour of the climate, for it will fly 
from a dog in company with its mafter, and take flicker by running 
up a tree. 

It is very defirudive to domeftic animals, particularly to hogs. It 
preys alfo upon the moofe and other deer j lies lurking upon the 
branch of a tree till feme of theie animals pafs underneath, when it. 
drops down upon one of them, and never quits its hold till it has 
idrunk its blood. It will i;ven attack bealls of prey. 

'The Couguar of P eJinfyl'va?iia—T\\\'s is another fpccies of cou- 
guar, found in the temperate climates of North-America, as on the 
mountains of Carolina, Georgia, Fcnnfylvania, and the adjacent pro- 
vinces. It differs much from the couguar above defcribed : his limbs 
are fliorter, his boct)' much longer, and his tail is alio three or four 
inches longer. But in the colour of the hair, and the form of the 
head and ears, they .have a pti"fc£l rcfemblance to each other. The 
cougiiar of Pcnnfylvania, lays Mr. Colinion/is an animal remarkable 
for thinnefs and length of body, lliortnels of legs, and length of tail. 
The length of the body, from the muzzle' to the anus, is five feet 
four inches, and that of the tail is two feet fix inches : the Tore legs 
arc one foot long, and the hind legs one foot three inches : thq 
height of the bgily before is one foot nine inches, and one foot ten 



inches behind : the circumference of the thickefl part of the body is 
two feet three inches. 

Black Co!ioiia7:—T\\\s nniinal differs from the firft we have de- 
fcribed, chiefly hi the colour, which is duflcy, fometimes fpotted 
with black, but generally plain. The throat, belly, and infides of 
the legs, are of a pale afli colour, the upper lip white, covered 
with long whiflters : above each eye it has very long hairs, and at the 
corner of the mouth a black fpot : its paws are white, and its cars 
fliarp and pointed. 

It grows to the fize of a heifer of a year old, and has great ftrcngth 
in its limbs. 

It mhabits Brafil and Guiana, is a cruel and fierce animal, rnuch 
dreaded by the Indians ; but fortunately the fpccies is not numerous. 

Ocelot.— Tht (kin of the male ocelot is extremely beautiful, and 
moft elegantly variegated. Its general colour is that of a bright 
tawny ; a black ftripe extends along the top of the back from head 
to tail ; its forehead is fpotted with black, as are alfo its legs ; its 
flxoulders, fides, and rump, are beautifully marbled with long ftripes 
of black, forming oval figures, filled in the middle with fmall black 
fpots ; its tail is irregularly marked with large fpots, and black at the 
end. The colours of the female are not fo vivid as thofe of the 
male, neither is itfo beautifully marked. 

The ocelot very much refembles the common cat in the form of 
its body, although it is a great deal larger. Buffon makes its height 
two feet and a half, and about four feet in length. 

It is a native of South-America, inhabits Mexico and Brafil, is 
very voracious, but timid, and feldom attacks men ; it is afraid of 
dogs, and when purfiied, flies to the woods. 

It lives chiefly in the mountains, and conceals itfelf araongft the 
leaves of trees, from whence it darts upon inch animals as come 
within its reach. It fometimes extends itftlf along the boughs, as if 
it were dead, till the monkies, tempted by their natural curiofity, 
approach within its reach. It is faid to preler the blood of animals 
to their flefli. 

Margay.— This is another beautiful animal of the fpotted tribe, 
and known in many places by the name of the Tiger Cat. The 
ground colour of the body is tawny ; the face is ftriped with black ; 
the body is marked with ftripes and large fpots of black ; the Ureaft 
and infide of the legs are white, fpotted with black; the tail is long, 
marked with alternate fpots of black, tawny, and i^rev, 

y y 2 The 


The margay is fmaller than the ocelot, and about the fize of the 
wildcat, which it refeinbles in difpofition and habit, living on fmall 
animals, birds, &c. — It is very wild, and cannot eafily be brought 
under fubjection. 

Its colours vary, though they are generally fuch as have been de- 
fer ibed. 

It is common in Guiana, Brazil, and various parts of South and 
North- America. 

It is called the Cayame Cat, and is notfo frequent in temperate as 
in warm climates. 

Ly7ix. — This animal differs greatly from every animal of the cat 
kind we have hitherto defcribed. Its ears are long and ereft, tufted 
at the end with long black hairs, by which this fpecies of animals is 
peculiarly diftinguiflied : the hair of the body is long and foft, of a 
red-afli colour, marked with duiky fpots, which differ according to 
the age of the creature; fometimes they are fcarcely vifible: its legs 
and feet are very thick and ftrong; its tail fliort, and black at the ex- 
tremity j its eyes are of a pale-yellow colour; and its afpeft fofter 
and lefs ferocious than that of the panther or the ounce. The flcin 
of the male is more fpotted than that of the female. 

The fur is valuable for its foftnefs and warmth, and is imported in 
great quantities from America and the north of Europe. In the 
United States there are three kinds of the lynx, each probably form- 
ing a diftinft fpecies. T\\t firjl (Lupus Cervarius, Linn. 3d edit.) 
is Galled by the French and Englifli Americans, Loup Cervier.* He is 
from two and a half to three feet in length; his tail is about five 
inches. His hair is long, of a light grey colour, forming, in fome 
places, fmall, irregular, dark fhades ; the end of his tail is black; 
his fur is fine and thick. He is the lynx of Siberia and fome of the 
northern parts of Europe. A few may be found in the noith-eaftern 
parts of the diftrift of Maine ; bnt in the higher latitudes they arc 
jnoic numerous. 

The J'ccond^ (Catus Cervarius^ Linn.) is called by the French 

Americans, Chat Cervier ; and in New England, the wild cat. He 

is conliderably lefs thnn the former, or the Loup Ccrvier. He is from 

two to two feet and a half long ; his tail is proportionably lliorter, 

about three inches long, and wants the tuft of black hair on the end 

ol it. His hair is fliorfer, particularly on his legs and feet; is of a 
darker colour, brown, dark fallow and grey, varioufly intermixed, 

|iis fur is faid to be of a very different quality ; his cars are fliortcr» 

* Pronounced Loorcrvce. 


and he has ver>' little of the pencil of black hairs on the tips of them, 
which is fo remarkable in the former kind. This animal deflroyed 
many of the cattle of the firft fetticrs of New England, 

The third fpecies is about the (ize of a common cat. The coteur 
of the male is a bright brown or bay, with black fpots on his legs. 
His tail is about four inches long, and encircled by eight white 

rings : the female is of a reddkfli grey. Found in the middle atui 

louthern States. 

To the above lift of animals of the cat kind we muft add the 
Kincajou, — This animal, Mr. Morfe obferves, belongs to the family 
of cats ; at leaft, he very much refembles them. He is about as large as 
a common cat, and is better formed for agility and fpeed than for 
ftrength. His tail gradually tapers to the end, and is as long as his 
whole body. His colour is yellow. Between him and the fox there 
is perpetual war. He hunts in the fame manner as do other animals 
of that ciafs; but being able to fufpend himfelf by twining the end 
of his tail round the limb of a tree, or the like, he can purfue his 
prey where other cats cannot ; and when he attacks a large animal, 
his tail enables him to fecure his hold till he can open the blood vef- 
fels of the neck. In fome parts of Canada thele animals are very 
numerous, and make great havoc among the deer, and do not fpare 
even the neat cattle : but we have heard of none in the United States, 
except a few in the northern parts of New Hampfliire. 


The beaver is the moft induftrious of all animals. Its la- 
bours feem the refult of a fecial compaft, formed for mutual con- 
venience, prefervation and fupport ; and as, in all well-regulated fo- 
cieties, a due fubordination is necelTary for the well-ordering and 
conducing each individual etfort to the advantage of the whole; fo, 
amongft thefe curious animals, we find that, in forming their habita- 
tions, all have their proper part of the work affigned to them, that, 
by dividing their labours, fafety, ftability and expedition, may be the 
general eftedl. To this purpofe, a community of two or three hun- 
dred aflfemble together: au oveiTeer is chofen, whofc orders are punc- 
tually obeyed; and, by ftriking the water fmartly with his tail, gives 
the fignal where the united force of number:^ is to be ap- 
plied, in order to ftrenglhen or fupport the fabric ; or, at the ap- 
proach of an enemy, to apprize the focicry of their danger. As 
Ibon as a convenient place is cliofen for the eredion of their building, 

I which 


which is generally a level piece of ground with a fmall rivukt run- 
ning through it, they divide into companies : fome are employed in 
cutting down trees of great fize, which is done by gnawing them 
with their teeth : thefe they lay acrofs the dam wnh furprifing labour 
and perfeverance, or form into jji'cs, which others rol' down to the 
water, where they make holes at the bottom for receiving the ends, 
and placing them u'^jright, fecure them in that pofition ; whilft ano- 
ther party is engaged in collefiing fwigs, interweaving and twiiling 
them with the piles, and thereby flrengthening the \vork: fome col- 
left large quantities of earth, flones, clay and other folid materials, 
which they difpofe of on the upper fide of the pi'es next the flream, 
forming a mound ten or twelve feet thick at the bottom, tapering 
gradually upwards, and cap?ible of fuflaining a confiderable weight 
of water. The length of the dam, occafioned by this means, is 
fometimes not tefs than one hundred .feet. — Having completed the 
mole, their next care is to erect their apartments, which are built on 
piles: they are of a circular form, and generally confift of two fto- 
ries, about eight feet high above the water; the firft lies below the 
level of the dam, and is generally full of water; the other above 
it. The walls are two feet in thicknefs, neatly plaiftered with 
clay on the infide, which is arched like an oven, and at the top re- 
sembles a dome. — In each houfe there are two openings, one towards 
the water, to which the animal has alwriys acceis, in cafe of fur- 
prife; the other towards the land, by which it goes out in quefl of 
food. — The number of houfes in one of thefe dams is from ten to 
twenty-five, fome of them large enough to contain a family of twenty 
or thirty beavers. Each beaver forms its bed of mofs ; and each 
family lays in its magazine of winter provifion, which confifts of 
bark and boughs of trees : they pile up the latter with great ingenuity 
and regularity, and draw it out to their apartments as their wants re- 
cjuire. They are faid to be fondeft of the faffafras, afli, and fwef^t 
gum. During fummer, they feed on leaves, fnnts and fometimes 
crabs or cray-filh ; but fifli is not their favourite food. Their time 
of building is early in the fummer. In winter, they never go far- 
ther than to their provifion flore?, and, during that feafon, are 
VI ry fat. 

They breed once a ycar^ and bring forth two or three at a 

Beavers are found chiefly in the northern parts of Europe, Afia 
and America; particularly the latter, from \vhcnce many thoufandg 



of their fkins are annually brought into Europe. They vaiy in co- 
lour; the moft valuable are black with a.dcep lur; but the general 
colour is a chelnut brown, more or lefs dark. Some have been founil 
entirely white, others fpotted ; but both thefe kinds are very rare. 

The beaver is remarkable for the fize and ftrength of its cutting 
teeth, which enable it to gnaw down trees of great magnitude with 
cafe. Its ears are liiort, and almofl: hid in the fur ; its nofe blunt, 
tail broad and flat, nearly of an oval form, and covered with fcales ; 
it ferves not only as a rudder to direft its motions in the water, but 
as a moft uleful inilrument for laying on the clay, preffingitinto 
the crevices, and fmoothmg the outward covering ; its fore feet are 
fmall, and not unlike thofe of a rat ; the hind feet are large and 
ftrong, with membranes between each toe ; its length, from nofe to 
tail, is about three feet ; the tail is eleven inches long, and three 

The caftor produced from thefe animals is found in a liquid ftate, 
in bags near the anus, about the fize of an egg. When taken off, 
the matter dries, and is reducible to a powder, which is oily, of a 
fliarp bitter tafte, and a flrong difagreeable fmell. Thefe bags arc 
found inditferently in males and females, and were formerly fup- 
pofed to be the animal's tefticles ; which, when purfued, it was faid 
to bite off, and by that means tfcape with its life. 


Although the otter is not confidered by naturalills as wholly 
amphibious, it is neverthelefs capable of remaining a confiderable 
time under water, and can purfue and take its prey in that element 
with great facility. 

Its legs are very fliort, but remarkably ftrong, broad and mufcu- 
lar ; on each foot are five toes, connefted by ftrong membranes, hke 
thofe of water fowl ; its head is broad, of an oval form, and flat on 
the upper part ; the body is long and round, and the tail tapers to a 
point ; the eyes are brilliant, and placed in fuch a manner, that the 
animal can fee every objeft that is above it, which gives it a Angu- 
lar afpe£l, very much refcmbling an eel or an afp : the ears are flwrt 
and their oritice narrow. 

The colour of the otter is of a deep brown, with two fmall light 
fpots on each fide of the nofe, and another under the chin. 

This animal makes its neft in fi:)me retired fpot by the fide of a. 
Uke or river, under a b^sk, where it has an Q^iy and fecure accefs 



to the water, to which jt immediately flies upon the leaft alarm ; 
and, as it fwims with great rapidity, generally efcapes from its 

It deftroys great quantities of fifh, and, in puifuit of its prey, has 
been obferved commonly to iwim agalnffc the ftream. 

As foon as the otter has caught a filh, it immediately drags it to 
the ihore, devours a part as far as the vent, and, unlefs prefled by 
extreme hunger, always leaves the remainder, and takes to the water 
in quell of more. 

Otters are generally taken in traps placed near their landing places, 
where they are carefully concealed in the fand. When hunted with 
dogs, the old ones defend themfelves with great obftinacy ; they 
bite feverely, and do not readily quit their hold where they have 
once faitened. An old otter will never give up while it has life, nor 
make the leaft complaint though wounded ever fo much by the dogs, 
nor even when transfixed with a fpear. 

Otters are found in moll parts of the world, with no great va- 
riation. They are numerous in North-America, and are common 
in Guiana, frequenting the rivers and marflies of that country. 
They are fometimes feen in great numbers together, and are fo fierce, 
that it is dangerous to come near them. They live in holes, which 
they make in the banks of the rivers. 

The otters of Cayenne are very la.'^ge, weighing from ninety t* 
one hundred pounds. They frequent the large rivers of that coun- 
try ; their cry is loud, and may be heard at a great diftance ; they 
are of a dark brown colour ; their fur is fliorter than that of the 
beaver, and very (oft. 

Befide thefe there is an animal called T'/jr Sra Offer. — Vaft numbers 
of thefe animals inhabit the coaft of Kamtfchatka, and the nume- 
rous iflands contiguous to it, as well as the oppofite coaib of Ame- 
rica ; they are alfo found in feme of the larger rivers of South- 

Their (kins are of great value, and have long formed a confidera- 
ble article of export from Rulfia. They difpofe of them to the 
Chinefe at the rate of feventy or a hundred rubies each, and receive 
in retinn fome of their moll valuable commodities. 

The fur of the fea otter is thick and long, of z beautiful fliining 
black colour, but Ibmetin^.cs of a lilvery hue ; the legs are thick 
and fliort ; the toes joined by a web ; the liind feet like thole of a 
;ca^> length, from uufe to Lail, foiK' iecc two inches j tail thirteen, 



fiat and pointed at the end : the largeft of tliem weigh from feventy 
to eighty pounds. 

The fea otter is remarkably harmlefs, and moft afFeftionatcIy 
fond of its young; it will pine to death for its lofs, and die on 
the very fpot where it has been taken away. Before its young can 
fwim, it will carry it in its paws, and fupport it in the water, 
laying upon its back. It fwims in various pofitions, on it^ back, 
fides, and even in a perpendicular pofture, and in the water h 
very fportive. Two of them are fomctimes feen embracing each 
other. It frequents fliallow places abounding with fea weed, and 
feeds on lobfters, crabs, and other fliell fifli. 

It breeds but once a year, and produces one young at a time, which 
it fuckles and carefully attends almoft a year. 

The flefli of a young otter is reckoned delicate eating, and not 
eafily difiinguiflied from tliat of a lamb. 

T/je H^eafel is about nine inches in length ; his body is remarkably 
round and flcnder; his tail long and well furniftied with hair ; his 
legs very flioit, and his toes armed with fliarp claws. His hair is 
fhort and thick, and of a pale yellowifli colour, except about the- 
breaft, where it is white. This is a very fprightly animal ; notwith- 
flanding the fhortnefs of its legs, it feems to dart rather than to run. 
He kills and eats rats, ftriped fqairrels, and other fmall quadrupeds : 
he llkewife kills fowls, fucks their blood, and eileems their eggs a 
delicacy. He is found at Hudfon's hay, Newfoundland, and as far 
as South Carolina. 

Stoatf or Ermine. — It does not differ materially from the weafel 
in fize, form or habits ; even his colour is the fame in fummer, ex- 
cept that the end of his tail is black, and the edges of his ears and 
toes are white. In winter he is entirely white, except the tip of the 
tail. He is generally conlidered as forming a fpecies dillin<ft from 
the weafel ; but Linnjeus makes them the fame. They are faid to be 
found in the fame places as the former, and Mr, Belknap mentions, 
that a few have been feen in New-Hampfliire. 

In addition to the preceding, America has another variety of this 
family, which appears to differ from the weafel in no refpe6t except 
in its colour, which is perfetStly white, both in hmimer and winter. 

Mjtr//«.— This animal is called the martin {Marte) by M. de Buf- 
fon ; in England the pine martin, fir martin, yellow-breafted mar- 
tin, pine weafel, and yellow-breafted weafel ; in New-England the 
fable ; and by the Indians Wauppanaugh, He is formed like the 

Vol. IV. Z z weafel j 


weafel ; is generally about fixteen inches long, and is of a fallow^ 
colour ; but his fize, and the fliades of his colour, vary in different 
parts of the country. Some have fpots of yellow on the breaft, 
others of white, and others have none. He keeps in forefts chiefly 
on trees, and lives by hunting. He is found in the northern parts 
of North-America quite to the South fea ; his fkin is exceeding va- 

Mink.— The mink is about as large as a martin, and of the fame 
form. The hair on its tail is fliorter ; its colour is generally black, 
and its fur coafer ; fome have a white fpot under their throats, others 
have none. They burrow in the ground, and purfue their prey both 
in frefli and fait water. Thofe which frequent the fait water are of 
a larger fize, lighter colour, and have inferior fur. They are found 
in confiderable numbers both in the fouthern and northern States, 
and in general wherever the martin is found. 

FiJJjer.—ln Canada he is called pekan, and in the American States 
frequently the black cat, but improperly, as he does not belong to 
the clafs of cats. He has a general refemblance to the martin, but 
is confiderably larger, being from twenty to twenty-four inches in 
length, and twelve in circumference. His tail is a little more than 
half its length ; its hair long and bufhy ; his fore legs about four 
inches and a half long, his hinder legs fix inches ; his ears fhort and 
round. His colour is black, except the head, neck and flioulders, 
which are a dark grey. He lives by hunting, and occafionally pur- 
fues his prey in the water. Found in the northern States, Canada, 
and Hudson's bay. Of each of the animals we have mentioned under 
this divifion, there are feveral varieties which have obtained dif*- 
ferent names, as the pekan, vifon, &:c. 

Skunk.— T\i\s animal is about a foot and a half long, of a mode- 
rate height and fize. His tail is long and bufliy ; his hair long and 
chiefly black ; but on his head, neck and back, is found more or 
lels of white, without any regularity or uniformity. He appears to 
fee but indifferently when the fun fliines, and therefore in the day- 
time keeps clofe to his burrow. As foon as the twilight commences 
he goes in queft of his food, which is principally beetles and other 
5nfe(5ls ; he is alfo very fond of eggs and young chickens. His flefh 
is faid to be tolerably good, and his fat is fometimes ufed as an 
emollient. But what renders this animal remarkable is, his being 
furniftied with organs for iecreting and retaining a liquor, volatile 
iiud fccfid beyond any thing known, and which he has the power 

. of 


©f emitting 'to the diftance of a rod or more, when neceflary for his 
defence. When this ammunition is expended he is quite harmlefs.* 
This volatile foetor is a powerful antifpafmodic. This animal is 
found in all parts of America from Hudfon's bay to Peru. 

There are three or four varieties mentioned by M. BufFon under 
the name of the Stinking Polecats^ all of which poflefs this wonder- 
ful quality of annoying their enemies from the fame quarter. 

Some turn their tail to their purfuers, and emit a moft horrible 
flench, which keeps both dogs and men at a confiderable diflance. 
Others ejed their urine to the diftance of feveral feet, and it is of fo 
virulent a quality, as almoft to occafion blindnefs, if any of it fliould 
happen to fall into the eyes. Clothes infefted with it retain the fmell 
for many days ; no walhing can make them fweet, but they muft 
be even buried in frelh foil before they can be thorcwghly cleanfed. 
Dogs that are not properly bred turn back as foon as they perceive 
the fmell ; thofe that have been accuftomed to it will kill the ani- 
mal, but are obliged to relieve theaifelves by thrufling their nofes 
into the ground. 

* Concerning the American (kunk, Dr. Mitchell, in a letter to Dr. Poft, lySS* 
writes thus : " Not long fmce I had an opportunity to difleft the American fkunk, 
{y'wena futorius, Linn.) The moft remarkable appearances, on examination, were 
the following : the (kin was exceedingly lax, infomuch that when pulled away from 
the fubjacent membrane, the hairs, in many places drawn through it, were left rooted in 
the fat ; the urine poflefled no more foetor than is common to that excrementitious 
fluid in many other animals : but the peculiar odoriferous fubftancc, which the creature 
emits when purfued, proceeds from two facks, each capable of containing about half 
an ounce, fituated at the extremity of the intrjiiuum reliuni, and furrounded by large 
and ftrong circular mufcles, which contrafting by a voluntary exertion, force out the 
thick yellowilh li(juor through twfl dudls, opening near the verge of the anus. As 
the animal is neither fwift nor ftrong, this fcems to have been given it as a de- 
fence againft its enemies, on whofe approach the volatile matter is difchargcd with 
confiderable force, and to no fmall diftance. From its analogy to muflc, ambergris, 
civet and caftor, I am flrongly inclined to think it might be with advantage r.anked 
amdng the antifpafmodiesof the Materia Medica, or claffed with drugs it) the Ihops of 

" A fimilar fubftance, although not io abundant and fragrant, I have likewif© 
found in bags of the fame kind, when I difll-ifled the commop weafel, {Mujlcla tsuli 
garii) which, in all probability, will be found to poflefs virtues not much differing 
from the fpodnar, or licjuor of the vivcrra, or the American (kunk. 

" The mufqualh, (Cajlor mufcatui) which I h.i\e alfo diffecfled, has no Cacks of this 
kind, and therefore I am forcibly led tofufpcfl th.itits oJi>ur rcfidcsin, the cuticular cx»l 
halants and perf^iicd matter." 

Z z » The 


The Stljltngj or Squajh^ which is the fecond variety,- i» nearly of 
the fame fize with the Ikunk ; its hair is long and of a deep brown 
colour ; it lives in holes and clefts of rocks, where the female brings 
forth her young : it is a native of Mexico, and feeds on beetles, 
worms and fmall birds : it deftroys poultry, of which it only eats 
the brains. When afraid or irritated it voids the fame offenfive kind 
of odour, which no creature dare venture to approach. Profeffor 
Kalm was in danger of being fuffocated by one that was purfued 
into a houfe where he flept ; and it affected the cattle fo much, that 
they bellowed through pain. Another, which was killed by a maid- 
fervant in a cellar, fo affefted her with its ftench, that fhe lay ill for 
feveral days : all the provifions that were in the places were fo tainted 
with the fmell, as to be utterly unfit for ufe. This is the coalTe of 
BufFon, of which we have given the figure. 

Another variety is called the Concpate ; it is fomewhat fmaller, 
and differs chiefly from the fquaih in being marked with five parallel 
white lines, which run along its back and fides from head to tail. 
, It is a native of North-America. When attacked it briftles up 
its hair, throws itfelf into a round form, and emits an odour which 
no creature can fupport. 

The laft of this peftiferous family which we fliall mention is the 
Zerilla. — This animal is a native of New-Spain, where it is called 
the mariputa : it is found on the banks of the river Ordnoque ; and, 
although extremely beautiful, is at the fame time the moft offenfive of 
all creatures. Its body is beautifully marked with white ftripes upon 
a black ground, running from the head to the middle of the back ; 
from whence they are crofTed with other white bands, which cover 
the lower part of the back and flanks : its tail is long and bufliy, 
black as far as the middle, and white to its extremity : it is an adive 
and mifchievous little animal ; its flench is faid to extend to a con- 
fiderable diftance, and is fo powerful as to overcome even the panther 
of America, which is one of its greateft enemies. 

Notvvithflanding this offenfive quality in thefe animals, they are 
frequently tamcJ, and will follow their mafler. They do not emit 
tfteif odour, unlefs when beaten or irfitnted. They are frequently 
killed by the native Indians, who immediately cut away the noxious 
glands, thereby preventing the flefh, which is good eating, from 
being inftdecl. Its tafte is faid nearly to rcfemble the flavour of a 
young pig. The lavage Indians make puifes of their fkins. 



The Coaily or Brazilian Wca/eL— This animal has fome rcfcm- 
blance to the bear, in the length of its hind legs, in the form of its 
feet, in the bufliinefs of its hair, and in the ftrufture of its paws. 
It is fmall ; its tail is long, and variegated with different colours ; 
its upper jaw is much longer than the lower, and very pliawt ; its 
ears are rounded : its hair is fmooth, foft and gloify, of a bright 
bay colour ; and its breaft is whitifli. 

It inhabits Brafil and Guiana, runs up trees veiy nimbly, eats like 
a dog, and holds its food between its fore legs like a bear. 

The Coati ftands with eafe on its hind feet. It is faid to gnaw it« 
own tail, which it generally carries ereft, and fweeps it about from 
fide to fide. 


The common European badger is the only one found in America ; 
for the animal of this genus, defcribed as a different fpecies, and 
called the American badger, is nothing more than a variation of the 
former. It is found in the neiglibourhood of Hudfon's bay and Ca- 
nada, as likewife in fome of the United States, but does not appear 
to be numerous. 


Virginian OppoJJ'um. — This animal has a long fliarp-pointed nofe ; 
large, round, naked, and very thin ears, black, edged with pure 
white, fmall, black, lively eyes ; long ftiif hairs each fide the nofe, 
and behind the eyes ; face covered with fhort foft white hairs ; fpacc 
round the eyes dufky ; neck very fliort, its fides of a dirty yellow j 
hind part of the neck and the back covered with hair above two 
inches long, foft but uneven, the bottoms of a yellowifli white, middle 
part black, ends whitifli ; fides covered with dirty and duiky hairs, 
belly with foft, woolly, dirty white hair ; legs and thighs black ; 
feetdulky; claws white; bafe of the tail clothed with long hairs 
like thofe on the back ; reft of the tail covered with fmall fcalcs, the 
half next the body black, the reft white ; it has a difagreeable ap- 
pearance, looking like the body of a fnake, and has the fame pie-- 
henfile quality as that of fome monkies ; body round and very 
thick ; legs fhort ; on the lower part of the belly of the female is a 
large pouch, in which the teats are lodged, and where the young 
flielter as foon as they are born. 

The ufual length of the animal is, from the tip of the nofe to the 
bafe of the tail, about twenty inches ; of the tail twelve inches. 

f Inhabits 


Inhabits Virginia, Louifiana, Mexico, Brafil and Peru ; is very 
deflructive to poultry, and fucks the bloed without eating the flefii ; 
feeds alio on roots and wild fruits ; is very adive in chmbing trees, 
will hang fufpended from the branches by its tail, and, by fwinging 
its body, fling itl'elf among the boughs of the neighbouring trees ; 
continues frequently hanging with its head downwards j hunts 
eagerly after birds and their nefts ; walks very flow ; when purfued 
and overtaken will feign itfelf dead ; not eafily killed, being as te- 
nacious of life as a cat ; when the female is about to bring forth> 
file makes a thick neft of dry grafs in fome clofe bufli at the foot of 
a tree, and brings four, five or fix young at a time. 

As foon as the young are brought forth they take flxelter in the 
pouch, or falfe belly, and faflen fo clofely to the teats, as not to be 
leparated without difiiculty ; they are blind, naked, and very fmall 
when new-born, and refemble fcetufcs ; it is therefore neceflary 
that they fliould continue there till they attain a perfect fliape, 
firength, fight and hair, and are prepared to undergo what may be 
called a fecond birth ; after which they run into this pouch as into 
an afylum in time of danger, and the parent carries them about 
p/ith her. During the time of this fecond geftation, the female 
jhews an exceffive attachment to her young, and will fufFer any 
torture rather than permit this receptacle to be opened, for flic 
has power of opening or clofing it by the afiiftance of fome very 
ftrong mufcles. 

The fiefli of the old animals is very good, like that of a fucking 
pig ; the hair is dyed by the Indian women, and wove into garters 
and girdles ; the fkin is very foetid. 

Murine Oppnjfum. — This animal has long broad ears, rounded at 
the end, thin and naked ; eyes encompaifed with black ; face, head, 
and upper part of the body, of a tawny colour ; the belly yellowifli 
white ; the feet covered with fliort whitifli hair ; toes formed like 
thofe of the Virginian ; tail flender, covered with minute fcales, 
from the tip to within two inches of the bafe, which are clothed 
with hair. Length, from nofe to tail, about eight inches j tail of 
the fame length : the female wants the falfe belly of the former, 
bur, on the lower part, the fkin forms on each fide a fold, between 
which the teats are lodged. 

This fpecies varies in colour. It inhabits the hot parts of South- 
America, agrees with the others in its food, manners, and the pre-i 
healile powers of its tail : it brings from ten to fourteen young at % 

time I 


time ; at leaft, in fome fpecies, there arc that number of teats : the 
young affix themfelves to the teats as foon as they are born, and re- 
main attached, like fo many inanimate things, till they attain growth 
and vigour to fliift a little for themfelves. 

Mexican Oppojfum has large, angular, naked and tranfparent ears; 
nofe thicker than that of the former kind ; vvhilkers very large ; a 
flight border of black furrounds the eyes ; face of a dirty white, 
with a dark line running down the middle ; the hairs on the head, 
and upper part of the body, afli-coloured at the roots, of a deep 
tawny brown at the tips ; legs dufky ; claws white ; belly dull cine- 
reous ; tail long and pretty thick, varied with brown and yellow, is 
hairy near an inch from its origin, the reft naked ; length, from nofe 
to tail, about nine inches ; the tail the length of the body and hea/S, 

Inhabits the mountains of Mexico, lives in trees, where it brings 
forth its young ; when in any fright they embrace their parent 
clofely ; the tail is preheiifi'e, and ferves inftead of a hand. 

Cayenne Oppojfum. — It has a long flender face ; ears ereft, pointed 
and fliort ; the coat woolly, mixed with very coarfe hairs, three 
inches long, of a dirty white from the roots to the middle, from 
thence to the ends of a deep brown ; fides and belly of a pale yd- 
low ; legs of a dulky biown; thumb on each foot diftinft ; on tire 
toes of the fore feet and thumb of the hind are nails, on the toes 
of the hind feet crooked claws ; tail very long, taper, naked and 
icaly. Length feventeen French inches ; of the tail fiftec;? and a 
half: the fubjeft meafured was young. 

Inhabits Cayenne, very a<^ive in climbing trees, on which it 
lives the whole day : in marfliy places feeds on crabs, which, wheir 
it cannot draw out of their holes with its feet, hooks them by means 
of its long tail ; if the crab pinches its tail the animal fets up a loud 
cry, which may be heard afar ; its common voice is a grunt like a. 
young pig : it is well furniflied with teeth, and will defend icfelf 
•ftoutly againft dogs ; brings forth four or five ya^ng, whicli it fe- 
cures in fome hollow tree. The natives eat thefe animals, and far 
their flelh refembles a hare. They are eafily tamed, and will thcu 
refufe no kind of food. 


This animal, called the Mexican hog, inhabits the hotteft parts 
of South- America, where the fpecies is very numerous ; herds coii- 



fifting of two or three hundred are ibmetimes to be feen togcthcT- 
It is very fierce, and will fight ftoutly with beafts of prey when at- 
tacked by them. The jaguar is its mortal enemy, and frequently 
lofes its life in engaging a number of thefe animals, for they afliil 
each other whenever attacked. 

They liv« chiefly in mountainous places, and are not fond of 
wallowing in the mire like the common hog. They feed on fruits, 
roots and feeds ; the}'^ likewife eat ferpents, toads and lizards, and 
are rery dexterous in firil taking off the (kin with their fore feet 
and teeth. 

It is fomewhat fmaller than the common hog; its body is covered 
with long briilles, which, when the creature is irritated, rife up 
like the prickles of a hedgehog, and are nearly as ftrong, they are 
of a dulky colour, with alternate rings of white; acrofs the flioul- 
ders to the breafl there is a band of white ; its head is ftiort and 
thick; it has two tufks in each jaw; its ears are fmall and creft ; 
and inilead of a tail it has a fmall flefliy protuberance, which does 
not cover its pefteriors. It differs mofl effentially from the hog, in 
having a fmall orifice on the lower part of the back, from whence a 
thin watry humour, of a mofl difagreeable fmell, flows very co- 

Like the common hog, the peccary is very prolific. The young 
ones, if taken at firfl, are eafily tamed, and foon lofe all their na- 
tural ferocity, but can never be brought to difcover any figns of at- 
tachment to thofe that feed them. 

Their flelh is drier and leaner than that of our hog, but is by no 
means difagreeable, and may be greatly improved by caflration. 

Although the European hog is common in America, and in many 
parts has become wild, the peccary has never been known to breed 
with it. They frequently go together, and feed in the fame woods ; 
but hitherto no intermediate breed has been known to arife from 
their intercourfc. 


Ouhica-Pi^^ or Rcfilcfs Cavy. — This little animal is a native of 
Brafil, but lives and propagates in temperate and even in cold cli- 
mates, when protected from the inclemency of the fealbns. Great 
num!:)ers are k. pt in a domeflic flate, and tl.ercfore wc conceive any 
iurthcr pbfei vations arc unneceflary. 



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Caiiai'.— This is a native of South-America, and lives on the 
banks of great rivers, fuch as the Oronoque, Amazons, and Rio 
^e la Plata; fwinis and' dives remarkably well, and is very dex- 
terous in catching fifl?, upon which it chiefly fubfifts : it likewif* 
eats grain, fruits and fugar-canes ; feeds moftly in the night, and 
commits great ravages in the gardens. They generally keep in large 
herds, and make a noife nor miich unlike the braying of an afs. : 

Jts flefn is fat and tender, but, like that of the otter, has an oily 
and fifliy tafte. It is about the fize of a fmall hog, and, by fome 
naturalifts, has been clalFed with that animal. 

Its fore hoofs are divided into four, the hind ones into three; it? 
head is large and thick, and on the nofe there arc long whilkers ; 
its ears are fmall and rounded, and its eyes large and black ; there 
are two large cutting-teeth and eight grinders in each jaw, and each 
of thele grinders forms on its furface what appears to be three 
teeth, flat at their ends ; the legs are Hiort, the toes long, and con- 
Ke6led at the bottom with a fmall web ; the end of each toe is guarded 
by a fmall hoof; it has no tail ; the hair on the body is fliort, rough, 
and of a brown colour. 

It is a gentle animal, eafily tamed, and will follow thofe who feed 
■it and treat it kindly. 

As it runs badly, on account of the peculiar conftruftion of its 
feet, its fafety confifts not in flight; Nature has provided it witli 
other means of prefervation ; when in danger it plunges into th? 
water and dives to a great diftance. 

Paca, or Spotted Cavy. — This animal is about the fize of a hare, 
but its body is much thicker, plumper and fatter. The colour of 
«he hair on the back is dark brown or liver-coloured ; it is lighter 
c^ the fides, which are beautifully marked with lines of white fpots, 
running in parallel diredlions from its throat to its rump ; thofe oa 
tlie Upper part of the body are perfeftly diftin6t ; the belly is white. 
Its head is large ; its ears fiiort and naked ; its eyes full and placed 
high in its head near the ears ; in the lower part of each jaw, im- 
mediately under the eye, it has a remarkably deep flit or furrow, 
which feems like the termination of the jaw, and has the appeaaancc 
of an opening of the mouth ; its upper jaw projects beyond the 
under ; it has two firong yellow cutting-teeth in each jaw ; its mouth 
is fmall, and its upper lip is divided ; it has long whilkers on its 
lips, and on each fide of its head under the ears ; its legs are fhort ; 
it has four toes on the fore feet, and three on the hind ; it has no 

Vol. IV. 2 A taij*. 


tail. It is a native cf South-America, and lives on the banks of 
rivers in warm and moift places. It digs holes \n the ground, fe- 
cretes itfelf during the day, and goes out at night in queft of food. 

It is a cleanly animal, and will not bear the fmalleft degree of 
dirtinefs in its apartment. When purfued it takes to the water, and 
efcapes by diving. If attacked by dogs it makes a vigorous defence. 
Its flefli is eftecmed a great delicacy by the natives of Brafil. 

We think this animal might be eafily naturalifed in this country, 
and added to our flock of ufeful animals. It is not much afraid of 
cold, and being accuftomed to burrow, it would by that means de- 
fend itfelf againfl: the rigours of our winter. 

There are feveral varieties of them, fome of which weigh from 
fourteen to twenty, and even thirty pounds. 

Agojiti^ or Long-nojed Cavy. — This animal is about the fize of 3 
bare ; its nofe is long, upper lip divided, (kin fleek and fliining, 
of a brown colour mixed with red, tail fliorr, legs flender and almoil 
naked ; has four toes on the fore feet and three on the hind j grunts 
like a pig, fits on its hind legs, and feeds itfelf with its paws ; 
and when fatiated with food it conceals the remainder. It eats 
fruits, roots, nuts, and almoft every kind of vegetable ; is hunted 
with dogs, runs fafl, and its motions are like thofe of a hare. Its 
ilelli, which refembles that of a rabbit, is eaten by the inhabitants 
of South-America. 

Great numbers of them are found in Guiana and Brafil. They 
live in woods, hedges and hollow trees. 

The female brings forth at all times of the year, and produces 
three, four, and Ibnietimes five at a time. 

Akouchi. — This leem3 to be a variety of the agouti, and, though 
ibmewhat lefs, is nearly of the fame form, but its tail is longer. It 
inhabits the fame countries, is of an olive colour; its flefli is white, 
delicate, and has the flavour of a young rabbit ; is much efteemed 
by the natives, who hunt it with dogs, and reckon it among the 
fineft game of South- America. 

Rock Cavy. — This is likeuifc found in Brafil, is about twelve 
inches in length ; the colour of the upper pai t of its body refembles 
that of the hare; its belly is white; tlie upper Up divided ; the 
cars fliort and rounded like thofe of a lat, and has no tail. It 
moves likes the hare, its fore legs being fliorter than the hind. It 
has four toes on the foje feet, and only tlvce on tjie hind. Its ilefli 



h like that of the rabbit, and its manner of living is alfo very 


American Hare, — This animal is not much more than half the 
the fize of the European hare ; its ears are tipt with grey, the neck 
and body mixed with cinereous, ruft colour, and black ; the upper 
part of the tail Wack and the lower part white ; the legs are of a 
pale ferruginous, and the belly white. This animal is found in all 
parts of North-America, South of New-Jerfey it retains its colour 
all the year ; but to the northward, in New-England, Canada and 
Hudfon's bay, it changes at the approach of winter ; its fummer 
coat for one, long, foft and filvery, the edges of its ears only pre- 
ferving their colour. Its flefh is good, and is exceeding ufeful to tliofe 
who winter at Hudfon's bay, where they are taken in abundance. 

Fa7ying Hare. — This animal in fummer is grey, with a flight mix- 
ture of black and tawny ; tail white, and the feet clofely and warmly 
covered with fur : in winter it changes to a fnowy white, except 
the tips and edges of the ears, which remain black : this change 
not only takes place in the cold bleak regions of the north, but when 
kept tame in ftove-warmed rooms. They are in America chiefly 
found about Hudfon's bay and Cook's river. 

'Brajilian Hare. — This animal has very large ears, a white ring 
round its neck, in ever}' other refpeft the fame as the common hare. 
It is found in Brafil and Mexico, and is very good for food. 

Mr. Morfe mentions another fpecies found in all the United States, 
which burrows like a rabbit ; this he thinks to be peculiar to Ame- 
rica. The rabbit, though it thrives well, particularly in South-Ame- 
rica, was never found wild in any part of the American continent. 


Of all animals this is the moft fluggifli and inaftivff ; and, if we 
were to judge from outward appearance, would feem the moft help- 
kfs and wretched. All irs motions feem to be the ctfe*ft of the moft 
painful exertion, which hunger alone is capable of exciting. 

It lives chiefly in trees ; and having afcended one with infinite 
labour and difficulty, it remains there till it has entirely ftripped it of 
all its verdure, fparing neither fruit, blolTom nor leaf ; after vvhich 
it is faid to devour even the bark. Being unable to defcend, it 
tlwows itfclf on the ground, and continues at the bottom of the tree 
till hunger ngnin compels it to renew its toils in fearch of fubfjfteuce. 

3 A 2 lt« 


■ Its motions are accompanied with a moft piteous and lam^ntabt* 
cry, which terrifies even beads of prey, and proves its beft defence. 

Though flow, aukward, and almoft incapable of motion, the 
floth is ftrong, remarkably tenacious of life, and capable of enduring 
a long abftinence from food. We are told of one that, having fattened 
itfelf by its feet to a pole, remained in that Situation forty days without 
the leail: fuften'ance. The firength in its legs and feet is fo great, 
that, having feized any thing, it is alniofl impoflible to oblige it to 
quit its hold. 

There are two kinds of floths, which are principally diftinguifhed 
by the number of their claws : the one, called the ai is about the 
fize of a fox, and has three long clavvs on each foot ; its legs are 
clumfy and aukwardly placed ; and the fore legs being longer than 
the hind, add greatly to the difficulty of its progreffive motion : it5 
tvhole body is covered with a rough cont of long hair, of a lighiifh- 
Brbwn colour, mixed with white, not unlike that of a badger, and 
lias a black'line .down the middle of the back ; its face is naked, and 
of a dirty white colour ; tail fliort, eyes fmall, black and heavy. It 
K founfd oni^ in South-America. 

"'.'The Z77M^ has' only two claws on each foot; its head is fhort and 
round, fomewhat like that of a monkey ; its ears are fhort, and it 
has no tail. It is found in South-America, and alfo in the ifland of 

The flefli of both kinds is eaten. They have feveralflomachs, 
and arc faid to belono- to the tribe of ruminating: animals. 


There are feveral aniirials diftinguiflied by the common name 
of ant-eaters, which differ greatly in form. They are divided into 
three claffes, viz. the Great, the Middle, and the Leffer Ant-eater. 

^'^h'e Gi-eat Ant-eater is nearly four feet in length, exclufive of its 
ttul, which is tW'O and a half. It is remarkable for the great length 
of its fnout, which is of a cylindrical form, and ferves as a fheath 
to its long aud fldnder tpfngue, which alvvnys lies folded double in 
ite fyionth, and is the chief inftrument by which it finds fubfiftence. 

'^hls creature is a native of Brafil and Guiana, runs flowly, fre- 
f^HiVy fwims ovefltvers, lives wholly on ants, which it collefts by 
tferuiUng its tongue into their holes, and having penetrated into 
eVil'yj^artof-the neft, withdiaws it into its mouth loaded with prey. 

•;X Its 

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- Its legs are fo flrong, that few animals can extricate themfclves 
^rcm its gripe. It is faid to be formidable even to the panthers of 
Ameiica, andfometimesfixesitfelf upon them in fuch a manner, that 
both of them fall and perifli together ; for its obftinacy is fo great, 
that it will not extricate itfelf from its adverfary even after he is 

The flefli has a ftrong difagrceable taftc, but it is eaten by the 

^be Middle Ant-eater is about one foot feven inches from nofc to 
tail; it inhabits the fame countries, and procures its food in the 
fame manner as the laft. Its tail is tea inches long, with which it 
fecures its hold in climbing trees by twilling it round the branches. 

Both thefe animals have four ftrcng claws on the fore feet, and 
five on the hind. 

Ihe Lcjfer Ant-eater has a fliarp-pointed nofe, inclining a little 
downwards ; its ears are fmall, and hid in the fur ; it has two flrong 
hooked claws on the fore feet, the outward one being much the 
largeft, and four on the hind feet ; its fur is long, foft and filky, of 
a yellowifli- brown colour ; its length, from nofe to tail, is fevea 
inches and a half, tail above eight, thick at the bafe, and taper to 
the end. It inhabits Guiana ; climbs trees in queft of a fpecies of 
ants which build their neib among the branches. 


Brajilian Porcupine. — This animal is very different from that 
known in general under the name of porcupine; indeed it can 
fcarcely be faid to bear any relation to it, except in its being covered 
with fpines about three inches in length ; they are white, very fliarp, 
and have a bar of black near the points. The breaft, belly, and 
lower part of the legs, are covered with ftrong briftly hairs of a 
brown colour ; its tail is long and llcnder, and almofl naked at the 
end; the animal ufes it in defcending trees by tuifting it round the 

It inhabits Mexico and Biafil, lives in woods, and feeds on fruits 
and fmall birds ; it preys by night and fleeps in the day. It makes a 
^loife like the grunting of a fuine, and grows very I'at. Its flcfli is 
>vhite and efleemcd good to eat. 

Coendou. — This animal inhabits the fame countries with the laft» 
and its habits and mode of living are liniilar ; but, in refpeft to its 
figure, it fesms to be a very different animal. Its ears are fliort and 



hid in the hair : its head, body, and upper part of its tail, are co- 
vered with long foft hair, in which are interfperfed a number of 
ilrong flisrp fpines ; its tail is fliorter than that of the preceding fpe- 
cies, and it ufes it in the fame manner in defcending trees, frequently 
fufpending itfelf from the branches. 

Urfon. — The urchin, or urfon, is about two feet in length, and 
when fat, the fame in circumference. He is commonly called hedge- 
hog or porcupine, but differs from both thofe animals in every cha- 
racleriflic mark, excepting his being armed with quills on his back 
and fides ; thefe quills are nearly as large as a wheat ftraw, from 
three to four inches long, and, unlefs erefted, nearly covered 
by the animal's hair ; tlieir points are very hard and filled with in- 
numerable very fmall barbs or fcales, whofe points are raifed from 
the body of the quill. When the urchin is attacked by a dog, wolf, 
«jr other .beafi: of prey, he throws himfelf into a poflure of defence, 
bv flvortening his body, elevating his back, and erecting his quills. 
The affailant foon finds fome of thofe weapons fluck into his mouth, 
or other parts ot his botiy, and every etfort which he makes td free 
himfelf caufes them to penetrate the farther ; they have been knowti 
to bury themfelves entirely in a few minutes. Sometimes they prove 
fatal, at other limes they make their way out again through the fkin 
from various jiarts of the body. If not molefted it is an inoffenfive 
animal. He finds a hole or hollow which he makes his refidencc, 
and feeds on the baiks and roots of vegetables. His flefli, in the 
opinion of hunters, is equal to that of a fucking pig. Is found in 
the northern States. 


This animal is found only in South-America, where there are fe- 
veral' varieties of them. They are all covered with a ftrong cruft or 
fh'jll, and are difiingniflred from each other by the number of the 
flexible bands of which it is compofed. 

it is a harmiefs, inoffenfive animal, feeds on roots, fruits and other 
vegetables, grows very tat, and is greatly titcemed for the delicacy 
of Its ftefii. 

The Indians hunt it with fmall dogs trained for that purpofe. 
When furprift'd it runs to its hole, or attempts to make a new one, 
which it does v.'ith great expedition, having Itrong claws on its fore 
ftct, with which it adheres fo firmly to the ground, that if it fliould 
he caught by the tail whilft making its way into the earth, its refift- 
Sl^.'.•« La fo great, that it will fomttlmes leave it in the hands of its 



purfuers : to avoid this the hunter has recourfe to artiticc, and by- 
tickling it with a ftick it gives up its hold, and I'uffcis itfelf to be 
taken alive. If no other means of efcape be left, it rolls itfelf up 
within its covering by drawing in its head and legs, and bringing its 
tail round them as a band to connect them more forcibly together: 
in this iituation it fometimcs efcapes by rolling itfelf over the edge 
of a precipice, and generally falls to the bottom unhurt. 

The moil fuccefsful method of catching armadillos is by fnarcs laid 
for them by the fides of rivers or other places where they frequent. 
They all burrow very deep in the ground, and feldon) ftir out ex- 
cept during the night, whilil they are in fearch of food. 

To give a minute defcription of the fliells or coverings of the 
armadillos would be extremely difficult, as they are all compofed 
of a number of parts, differing greatly from each other in the order 
and difpofition of the figures with which they are diilinguiilied : but 
it may be neceflary to obferve, that in general there are two large 
pieces that cover the flioulders and the rump, between which lie die 
bands, which are more or lefs in number in different kinds. Thefc 
bands are not unlike thofe in the tail of a lobfter, and, being flexible, 
give way to the motions of the animal. The firft we fliall mention 
rs the 

Ihrechandcil Arma^.illo. — Its fliell is about twelve inches long, 
with three bands in the middle ; the craft on the head, back and 
rump, is divided into a number of elegant raifed figures, with five 
angles or fides ; its tail is not more than two inches long ; it has 
neither cutting nor canine teeth, and has five toes on each foot. 

Six-landed Armadillo. — Is about the fize of a young pig. Between 
the folds of the bnnds there are a few fcattered hairs ; its tail is long, 
thick at the bafe, and tapers to a point. It is found in Brafil and 

Kight-landcd Armadillo. — Its ears are long and upright, eyes fmall 
and black ; it has four toes on the fore feet and five on the hind ; its 
length, fiom nofe to tail, is about ten inches, the tail nine. It in- 
habits Brafil, and is reckoned more delicious eating than the others. 

Nine-handed Armadillo has a tenth band, moveable half way up on 
each fide ; the fliell on the Ihoulders and rump is marked with hex- 
angular figures ; the breaft and belly are covered with long hairs ; 
its tail is long and taper, and the whole animal three feet in length. 

One of this kind was brought to Enghnd a few years ago from 
I the 


the Mufquita fliore, and lived fome time. It was fed witK raw beef 
and milk, but refufed to eat our fruits and grain. 

The Kahajfou is furniflied with twelve bands, and is the largeft of 
all the armadilios, being almofl three feet long from nofe to tail ; the 
figures on the fhoulders are of an oblong form, thofe on the rump 
hexangular. It is feldom eaten. 

Weaf el-headed Armadillo^ fo called from the form of its head, which 
is flender, has eighteen bands from its Ihoulder to its tail ; the fhell 
is marked with fquare figures on the Ihoulders, thofe on the legs and 
thighs are roundifh ; the body is about fifteen inches long, tail five. 

All thefe animals have the power of drawing themfelves up under 
their fliells, either for the purpofe of repofe or fafety. They are 
furniflied with ftrong lateral mufcles, confiicing of numberlefs fibres, 
croffing each other in the form of an X, with which they contract 
■themfelves fo powerfully, that the frrongeft man is fcarcely able to 
force them open. The fliells of the larger armadillos are much 
Wronger than thofe of the fmaller kinds ; their ficlh is likewife hardef 
and more unfit for the table, 


Sluehc Marmot. — This animal is called in the United States the 
•woodQhuck ; his body is about fixteen inches long, and nearly the 
fame in circumference ; his tail is moderately long and full of hair ;^ 
!»is colour is a mixture of fallow and grey. Ke digs a burrow in or 
near fome cultivated field, and feeds on pulfe, the tops of cultivated 
clover, &c. He is generally very fat, excepting in the fpring. The 
young are good meat, the old are rather rank and difagreeable. In 
the beginning of Odober they retire to their burrou?, and live in 
a torpid fhite about fix months. In many rcipefts he agrees with 
tlie maiTiiot of the Alps, in others he differs, and on the whole is 
probably not the fame. 

An animal rcfembling the woodchuck is found in the foulhern 
States, which is fuppofed to fcrm another fpecies, it is called the 
Maryland Marmot. 

Bcfidcs the above there arc three other fpecies of this genus found 
in Americii, the Hoary, the l\iil-leff, and the £ar-lefs Marmot ; the 
two former aio fouixl in the northern parts of the continent, and the 
latter on the wcftern iide only. 




Fox Squirrel. — Of this aaimal there are feveral varieties, black, 
red and grey. It is nearly twice as large as the common grey fquir* 
rel, and is found in the fouthern States, and is peculiar to the Ame- 
rican continent. 

Grey Squirrel. — The grey fquirrel of America docs not agree ex- 
a6lly with that of Europe, but is generally confidered as of the 
the fame fpecies. Its name indicates its general colour ; but fome 
are black, and others black on the back and grey on the fides. They 
make a neft of mofs in a hollow tree, and here they depofit theix 
provifion of nuts and acorns ; this is the place of their rehdence 
during the winter, and here they bring forth their young. Their 
fummer houfe, which is built of flicks and leaves, is placed near the 
top of the tree. They fometimes migrate in confiderable numbers. 
If in their courfe they meet with a river, each of them takes a 
fliingle, piece of bark, or the like, and carries it to the water : thus 
equipped they embark, and ereft their tails to the gentle breeze, 
which foon wafts them over in fafety ; but a fudden flaw of wind 
fometimes produces a deftruftive fliipwreck. The greater part of 
the males of this fpecies Is found caitrated. They are found from 
New-England to Chili and Peru. A grey fquirrel is found in Vir- 
ginia nearly twice as large as this ; whether it be the fame, or a 
different fpecies, is uncertain. 

Red Squirrel. — This is lefs than the grey fquirrel. It has a red lift 
along its back, grey on its fides, and white under the belly. It dif- 
fers in fome refpedh from the common European fquirrel ; but M. 
de BufFon confiders it as the fame fpecies. Its food is the fame as that 
of the grey fquirrel, except that it fometimes feeds on the feeds of 
the pine and other evergreens ; hence it is fortetimes called the pine 
fquirrel, and is found in general farther to the northward than the 
grey fquirrel. It fpends part of its time on trees in queft of food ; 
iJbt confiders its hole, under fome rock or log, as its home. 

Striped Squirrel. — This is ftill lefs than the laft mentioned ; its 
colour is red ; it has a narrow flripe of black along its back ; at 
the diftance of about half an inch on each fide is a ftripe of 
white, bordered with very narrow ftripes of black ; its belly is white. 
In the males the colours are brighter and better defined than in the 
female. It is fometimes called a moufe fquirrel and ground fquirrel, 
from its forming a burrow in loofe ground. Linnaeus confounds it 

Vol. IV. 3 B witli 


with a ftriped moufe fquirrel found in the north of Afia ; but that 
animal is reprefented as in feme meafure refenibling the moufe, 
whereas this is a genuine fquirrel. In the fummer it feeds on apples, 
peaches, and various kinds of fruit and feeds, and for its winter 
ftore lays up nuts, acorns and grain. It fomelimes afcends trees in 
quefl of food, but always defcends on the appearance of danger; 
nor does it feel fecure but in its hole, a flone wall, or fon»e covert 
place. Found in the northern and middle States. 

Flying Squirrel. — This is the moft Angular of the clafs of fquirrels. 
A duplicature of the fkin connedts the fore and hinder legs together; 
by extending this membrane it is able to leap much farther, and to 
alight with more fafety than other fquirrels. It lives in the holes of 
trees and feeds on feeds. Is found in general from the foutheru 
parts of Hudlbn's bay to Mexico. 

Befides the above, there are feveral other varieties of this genus, 
fome peculiar to the whole continent, and fome to particular parts, 
from whence they have been named, as the Hudfon's bay fquirrel, 
varied fquirrel of Mexico, Mexican fquirrel, Brafilian fquirrel, &c. 

Striped Dormoufc- — Of this genus of animals, called fometinics 
garden fquirrels, we believe there is only one fpecics known in 
North-America, viz. the flriped doriBOufe, which is exceeding 
j;lenty throughout all the forells. 


Of this genus of animals America produces various fpecies_, two 
©r three only of which we fliall notice. 

Mufquajh, or mulk rat of Canada. This animal is about the fize 
of a young rabbit ; its head is thick and (horr, refembling that of 
a water rat ; its hair foft and gloffy ; beneath the outward hair there 
is a thick fine down, very ufeful in the manufadfure of hats ; it is 
of a reddifli brown colour; its bread and belly afli, tinged with 
red ; its tail is long and flat, covered with fcales ; its eyes are large, 
its ears fhort and hair}' ; it has two flrong cutting-teeth in each 
jaw, thofe of the under jaw are about an inch long, but the uppef 
ones are flaortcr. 

This animal is a native of Canada, where it is called the Ondatra. 

In many refpe<51s it very mtich refembles the beaver, both in form 
and manners. It is fond of the water, and fwims well. At the 
approach of winter feveral famiHes afTociate together. They build 
little huts, about two feet in diameter, corapofed of herbs and ruflies 



cemented with clay, forming a dome-like covering : from thefe arc 
fevcral paflages, in different direftions, by which they go out in qucft 
of roots and other food. The hunters take them in the fpring, by 
opening their holes, and letting in the light fuddenly upon them. At 
that time their flefh is tolerably good, and is frequently eaten, but in 
the fummcr it acquires a fcent of mulk, fo ftrong as to render it per- 
fectly unpalatable. 

Wood Rat. — This is a very curious animal ; not half the fize of a 
domeftic rat ; of a dark brown or black colour ; their tails flender 
and fliort in proportion, and covered thinly wirh fhort hair. They 
tire Angular with refpeft to their ingenuity and great labour in con- 
ftru£ting their habitations, which are conical pyramids, about three 
or four feet high, conftru£ted with dry branches, which they colleft 
with great labour and perfeverance, and pile up without any appa- 
rent order ; yet they are fo interwoven with one another, that it 
would take a bear or a wild cat fome time to pull one of thefe 
caflles to pieces, and allow the animals fufficient time to retreat with 
their young. 

There is Hkewife a ground rat, twice as large as the common rat, 
V'hich burrows in the ground. Bartrani's Tmnjels, 

Shreiv Monfe. — This is the fmalleft of quadrupeds, and holds nearly 
the fame place among them as the humming bird does among the 
feathered race. Their head, which conftitutes about one third of 
their whole length, has fome refemblance to that of a mole ; the ears 
are wanting ; their eyes fcarcely vifible ; the nofe very long, pointed, 
and furniflied with long hairs. In other refpedts thefe refemble the 
common moufe. They live in woods, and are fuppofed to feed on 
grain and infcfts. Diti'erent fpecies of them are found in Bralil, 
Mexico, Carolina, Nevv-Eng'and, and Hudfon's bay. 

Mok.—'liht Purple Mole is found in Virginia ; the Bkck Mole 1 a 
New-England ; he lives in and about the water : they differ from one 
another, and both from the European. There are three other fpe- 
cies found about New- York, viz. the Long-tailed, the Radiated, and 
the Brown ; the former is alfo found in the interior of Hudfon's 


The monkies of America are diftinguiflied by M. BufFon by the 

generic names of Snpajous and Sagoins ; they have neirher cheek 

pouches nor caliofities on their buttocks, and they are diflinguiflied 

>roni «ach o(hcr by charaifters peculiar K> each. The fapajou i;» fur- 

> 3 B 2 iiifhed 


niflied with a prehenfile tail, the under part of which is generally co- 
vered with a fmooth naked (kin ; tiie animal can coil it up or extend 
it at pleafure, fufpend itfelf by its extremity on the branches of trees, 
or ufe it as a hand to lay hold of any thing it wants. The tails of 
all the fagoins, on the contrary, are longer than thofe of the fapa- 
jous, ftraight, flaccid, and entirely covered with hair. This differ- 
ence alone is funicient to diftinguifh a fapajou from a fagoin. 

Ouarine, or Preacher. — This is the largeft of all the American 
xnonkies, being about the fize of a large fox ; its body is covered with 
long fmooth hair, of a fliining black coloar, forming a kind of rulF 
round the animal's neck \ its tail is long, and always twifted at the 

Great numbers of tliefe monkies inhabit the woods of Brafil and 
Guiana, and, from the great noife they make, are called HoK.K)ling 
Monkies. Several of them alTemble together, one placing himfelf on 
a higher branch, the reft placing themfelves in a kind of regular 
order ; below him the firlt then begins as though to harangue with 
a loud tone, which may be heard at a great diftance; at a fignal made 
•with his hand, the reft join in a general chorus, the moft dilTonant 
and tremendous that can be conceived ; on another fignal they 
all flop, except the firft, who finiflies fingly, and the afTembly breaks 

Thefe monkies are very fierce, and fo wild and mifchievous, that 
they can neither be conquered nor tamed. They feed on fruits, 
grain, herbs, and fometimes infeds ; live in trees, and leap from 
bough to bough with wonderful agility, catching hold with their 
bands and tails as they throw themfelves from one branch to ano- 

There is a variety of this fpecies of a ferruginous or reddifh co- 
lour, which the Indians call the Royaly or Khig Monkey ; it is as large 
and noify as the former. This is eaten by the natives, and fomctime* 
by the Europeans, and deemed excellent food. 

Coalta. — This animal is fomewhat lefs than the ouarine ; its body 
and limbs are long and flender, hair black and rough, tail long, and 
naked on the under fide near the end. It has a long flat face of a- 
fwarthy colour, its eyes funk in its head, and its ears refembling 
human j it has only four fingers on the haaids, being deftitutc of the 

It is found in the neighbourhood of Carthagena, in Guiana, Brafil, 
and Ptru, Great _n;unbers aflbciate together j they feldom appear on 


■J )\'rr/jr/: / Oraz/jj^c /J/Ztc. ^ 

/iiNM,,/,ul/u- .Lt ,lir,-<l.,- .Iiif/wl Mr-,,/ A, MM .r,m.i>,O.Ai/,n<.'.,^,r /{,; 


"the ground, but live moflly in trees, and feed on fruits ; when thefc 
are not to be had, they arc faid to cat fillies, worms and infcdi^s ; are 
extremely dexterous in catching their prey, and make great ul'c of 
their tails in feizing it. 

They are very lively and adllve. In paffing from one tree to nno- 
ther, tliey fometimes form a chain, linked to each other by their 
tails, and fwing in that manner till the loweft catches hold of a 
branch, and draws up the reft. When fruits are ripe, they are gene- 
rally fat, and their flefla is then faid to be excellent. 

There are many varieties of the coaita, which differ chiefly in co- 
lour ; fome are totally black, others brown, and fome have white 
hair on the under parts of their body. They are called Spiikr 
Monkics by Edwards, on account of the length and flendernels of their 
legs and tails. 

M. Buffon fiippofes the Exquima to be another variety of this fpe- 
cies. It is nearly of the fame fize, but its colour is variegated. The 
hair on its back is black and yellow, its throat and belly white : its 
manner of living is the fame with that of the coaita, and it inhabits 
the fame countries. 

Sajon, or Capuchin. — There are two varieties of this fpecies, the 
brown and the giey, which, in other refpeds, are perfectly fimilar- 
Their faces are of a flefli colour, thinly covered with down ; tails 
long, full of hair on the upper fide, naked below, and prehenfiie ; 
hands black and naked ; length of the body about twelve inches. 

Thefe animals inhabit Guiana, are extremely lively and agile, and 
their conftitution feems better adapted to the temperate climates of 
Europe than mo^ of the fapajou kind. IM. Buffon mentions a few 
inflances of their having been produetd in France. 

The fajous are very capricious in their attachments, being fond of 
particular perfons, and difcovering the greateft averfion to others. 

Sai^ or JVecper, inhabits Brafil, is very mild, docile, and timid ; 
of a grave and ferious afpe61:, has an appearance of weeping, and 
when irritated, makes a plaintive noife. It is about fourteen inches 
long, the tail longer than the body ; hair Dn the back and fides of a 
deep brown colour, mixed with red on the lower parts. There is a 
variety with hair on the throat and bfeaft. 

Great numbers of theie creatures alfc-mble together, particularly in 
ftormy weather, and make a great chattering; they live much ia 
trees which bear a podded fruit as large as bean;, on which the) 
principal^j" feed. 

4 Saimiri^ 


Saimirit or Orange Monkey, — This is a moll beautiful aniniatl, tnif 
fo extremely deJicate, that it cannot weJl bear to be brought from its 
own climate to one lefs warm and temperate. 

It is about the lize of a fquirrel ; its head is round, eyes remarka- 
bly lively and brilliant, ears large, hair [on the body fliort and fine^ 
of a fliining gold colour, feet orange, its tail is very long ; its pre- 
henfile faculty is much weaker than the reft of the fapajous, and on 
that account it may be faid to form a fliade between them and the-^ 
fagoins, which have long tails, entirely covered with hair, but of 
no ufe in fufpending their bodies from the branches of trees or 
other obje«5ts. 

Mtco^ or Fair Monkey. — This is the moft beautiful of all this nw- 
merous race of animals. Its head is fmall and round ; face and ears 
of fo lively a vermilion colour, as to tippear the effefl of art; its 
body is covered with long hair, of a bright filvery whitenefs, and 
uncommon elegance ; tail long, and of a fliining dark chefnut colour. 

It frequents the banks of the river of Amazons, where it was dif- 
covered by M. Condamaine, who preferved one alive till almoft within 
fight of the French coaft, but it died before its arrival. 

Oijiitif or Crtg'w.— This is a fmall animal, its head and body not 
exceeding feven inches in length j its tail is long, bufliy, and, like 
that of the macauco, marked with alternate rings of black and afh 
colour ; its face is naked, of a fwarthy fiefli colour ; ears large, and 
like the human, with two very large tufts of white hairs flanding out 
on each fide ; the body beautifully marked whh dulky, afii-colourcd, 
and reddifli bars j its nails are fliarp, and its fingers like thofe of a 

The oufl:iti inhabits Brafil, feeds on fruits, vegetables, infefts, and 
fnails, and is fond of fifli. 

5«i/.— Sometimes called the t ox-tailed Monkey^ becaufe its tail, like 
that of the fox, is covered with long hair. Its body is about feven- 
teen inches in length ; hair long, of a dark brown colour on the back, 
lighter on the under fide ; its face is tawny, and covered with a fine 
fliort whitifh down ; the forehead and fides of the face are white j its 
hands and feet are black, with claws inftead of nails ; is a native of 
Guiana, where it is called the faccawinkee. 

Pinchcy or Red-tailed Monkey. --~T\\\s is fomewhat larger than the 
ouftiti. It is remarkable in having a great quantity of fmooth whita 
hair, which fells down from the top of its head on each fide, form- 
ing a curious coutraft with its face, which is black, thinly covered 




Ma--.. ->.^7^ 



^^^^^^^^^ffcilHlTWll ii'ii — -^ 





/iMuA.J ,1.1 tir 1,-f ,/irr.t, .ht,,;,t/::i/-.fl h'/Z/lSl i//, /•.l/,rii.:i/.r /!.■»•. 


with a fine grey down ; its eyes are black and lively ; throat black ; 
hair on the back and flioulders of a light reddifli brown colour ; 
breaft, belly, and legs, white; the tail is long, of a red colour from 
the rump to the middle, from thence to the end it is black. 

Tlie piiiche inhabits the woods on the banks of the river of Ama- 
zons ; is a lively, beautiful little animal ; has a foft whiftling voice, 
refemhling more the chirping of a bird than the cry of a quadruped. 
It frequently walks with its long tail over its back. 

Marikina. — This is by fome called the Lion Ape^ from the quan". 
tityofhair which furrounds its face, falling backwards like a mane ; 
its tail is alfo fomewhat bufliy at the end ; its face is flat, and of a dull 
purple colour ; its hair long, bright, and fdky, from whence it is 
called the Silky Monkey ; it is of a pale yellow colour on the body ; 
the hair round the face of a bright ba}', inclining to red ; its hands 
and feet are without hair, and of the fame colour as the face ; its body 
is ten inches long, tail thirteen. 

This creature is a native of Guiana, is very gentle and lively, and 
feems to be more hardy than the other fagoins : BufFon fays, that one 
of them lived at Paris feveral years, with no other precaution than 
keeping it in a warm room during winter. 

Taniarin.-^'X\\\% is the (ize ef a fquirrel ; its face is naked, of a 
fvvarthy fleQi colour ; its upper lip fomewhat divided ; its ears are 
very large and ereft, from whence it is called the Great- eared Monkey; 
its hair is foft, fliaggy, and of a black colour ; hands and feet covered 
with orange-coloured liair, very fine and fmooth ; its nails long and 
crooked ; tail black, and twice the length of its body. 

The tamarin inhabits the hotter parts of South- America ; is a lively, 
pleafant animal, eafily tamed, but fo delicate, that it cannot bear a 
removal to a lefs temperate climate. 

Moft of the above genus feem to be more particularly natives of 
South-America, but they are likewife faid to be found on the lower 
parts of the Miffiffippi. 


JFijlneSf or Sea-horfe, — There are feveral animals whofe refidence 
is almoft conliantly in the water, and which feem to partake 
g.eatly of the nature of fiflies, they are neverthelefs claffed by natu- 
ralifts under the denomination of quadrupeds; and being perfedly 
amphibious, living with equal eafe on the water as ©n land, may be 
confidered as the Ult iiep in the fcale of Mature, by which we are 



condu£ked from one great divilion of ^the animal world to the other. 
Of thefe the wahus is the moft confiderable ; it has a round head j 
fmall mouth ; very thick lips, covered above and below with pellu- 
cid briftles as thick as a ftraw ; fmall fiery eyes ; two fmall orifices 
in (lead of ears ; fhort neck ; body thick in the middle, tapering to- 
wards the tail ; fkin thick, wrinkled, with fhort brownilh hairs thinly 
difperfed ; legs fliort, five toes on each, all connefted by webs, 
and fmall nails on each ; the hind feet very broad ; each leg loufely 
articulated; the hind legs generally extended on aline with the body j 
tail very fliort ; length, from nofe to tail, fometimes eighteen feet, 
and ten or twelve round in the thickeft part ; the teeth have been 
fometimes found of the weight * of twenty pounds each. 

They inhabit the coaft of Spitzbergen, Nova Zembla, Hudfon's 
bay, and the gulph of St. Lawrence, and the Icy fea, as far as cape 
Tfchuktfchi, and the iflands off it, but does not extend ibuthward as 
far as the mouth of the Anadyr, nor are any feen in the iflands be- 
tween Kamtfchatka and America : they are gregarious ; in fome 
places appear in herds of hundreds ; are fliy animals, and avoid places 
which are much haunted by mankind ;■[ are very fierce ; if wounded 
in the water, they attempt to fink the boat, either by rifing under it, 
or by ftriking their great teeth into the fides ; roar very loud, and 
vv'ill follow the boat till it gets out of fight. Numbers of them 
are often feen fleepin^j on an ifland of ice ; if awakened, fling them- 
felves with great impetuofity into the fea, at which time it is 
tfano-erous to approach the ice, lefl: they fliould tumble into ths 
boat and overiet it ; do not go upon the land till the coaft is 
clear of ice. At particular times, they land in amazing numbers ; 
the moment the firft gets on fliore, fo as to lie dry, it will not 
fiir till another comes and forcts it forward by beating it with its 
great teeth ; this is ferved in the fame manner by the next, and fo 
in fucccfiion till the whole is landed, continuing tumbling over 
die another, and forcing the foremoft, for the fake of quiet, to re- 
move further up. 

'* Teeth of this fize are only found on the coaft oftl^e Icy fe.ij where the animals 
are feldom moleftcd, and have time to attain their full growth. ////Z. KamtJc/tatLi, 

f In 1608, the crew of an Englifli vcdcl killed on Cherry ifle above nine hundred 
Wahufes in feven hours time ; for they lay in heaj s, like hogs huddled one upon ano- 
ther. I^Mtei'i .S^/Vsircg. iSi, 1S2. 



iThey bring one, or at moft two young at a -time ; feed on 
fea herbs and fifh, alfo on Ihells, which they dig out of the fand 
with their teeth; are faid alfo to make ufe of their teeth to afcend 
rocks or pieces of ice, fafteiling them to the cracks, and drawing 
their bodies up by that means. Bcfides mankind, they feem to have 
no other enemy than the white bear, with whom they have terrible 
combats, but arc generally viftorious. 

They are killed for the fake of the oil, one animal producing 
about half a ton. 

Seal. — Of this genus there are feveral fpccies, all of which, there 
is no doubt, are found on feme part of the coaft of America. 

Wfyale-tailcd Manaii. — This animal in nature fo nearly approaches 
the cetaceous tribe, that it is merely in conformity to the fyftematic 
writers, that it is continued in this clafs ; it fcarce deferves the 
name of a biped ; what are called feet are little more than pec- 
toral fins ; they ferve only for Iwimming ; they are never ufed to 
aflift the animal in walking or landing, for it never goes afhore, 
nor ever attempts to climb the rocks, like the walrus and feal. It 
brings forth in the water, and, like the whale, fuckles its young in 
that element ; like the whale, it has no voice, and, like that animal, 
h^s an horizontal broad tail in form of a crefcent, without even the 
rudiments of hind feet. 

Inhabits the feas about Bering's and the other Aleutian iflands, 
Xvhich intervene between Kamtfchatka and America, but never ap- 
pears off Kamtfchatka, unlefs blown afliore by a tempeft. Is pro- 
bably the fame fpecies which is found above Mindanao, but is 
Tertainly that which inhabits near Rodriguez, vulgarly called 
Diego Reys, an ifland on the eail of Mauritius, or the iile of France, 
near which it is likewife found. 

They live perpetually in the water, and frequent the edges of 
the (hores ; and in calm weather fwim in great droves near the 
mouths of rivers j in the time of flood they come fo near the 
land, that a perfon may flroke them with his hand ; if hurt, they 
fwim out to the fea, but prefently return again. They live 
in families, one near another; each confifts of a male, a female, 
a half-grown young one, and a very fmall one. The females ob'ige 
the young to fwim before them, while the other old ones furro.uid, 
and, as it were, guard them on ail fides. If the female is attacked, the 
male will defend her to the utmofl, and if (lie is killed, will follow 
Vol. IV. 3 C her 


her corpfe to the very fliore, and fwim for ibme days near the place if 
has been landed at. 

They copulate in the fpring, in the fame manner as the humaa 
kind, efpecially in calm weather, towards the evening. The fe- 
male fwims gently about ; the male purfues, till, tired with wan- 
toning, file flings herfelf on her back, and admits his embraces.* 
Stelier thinks they go with young above a year ; it is certain that 
they bring but one young at a time, which they fuckle by two teats 
placed between the breafts. 

They are vaftly voracious and gluttonous, and feed not only 
on the fuci that grow in the fea, but fuch as are flung on the edges 
of the fliore. When they are filled, they fall afleep on their backs. 
During their meals, they are fo intent on their food, that any one 
may go among them and chufe which he likes beft. 

Their back and their fides are generally above water, and as 
their fkin is filled with a fpecies of loufe peculiar to them, numbera 
of gulls are continually perching on their backs, and picking out the 

They continue in the Kamtfchatkan and American feas the whole 
year ; but in winter are very lean, fo that you may count their ribs. 
They are taken by harpoons fafl:ened to a ftrong cord, and after 
they are flruck, it requires the united force of thirty men to draw 
ihem on fliore. Sometimes, when they are transfixed, they will lay 
hold of the rocks with their paws, and flick fo faft as to leave the 
fldn behind before they can be forced off. When a Manati is 
Jftruck, its companions fwim to its affiilancc ; fome will attempt 
to overturn the boat, by getting under it ; others will prefs down 
the rope, ia order to break it; and others will fl;rike at the harpoon 
ivith their tails, with a view of getting it out, which they ofcen fuc- 
ceed in. They have not any voice, but make a noife by hard breuth- 
ing, like the Inorting of a horfe. 

They are of an enormous fize; fome are twenty-eight feet long, 
and eight thoufand pounds in weight ; but if the mindanao fpecies is 
the fame with this, it decreafes greatly in fize as it advances fouth- 
ward, for the largeft which Dampier faw there, weighed only fix 
hundred pounds. The head, in proportion to the bulk of the ani- 

""* The Iconlnc nnd uiTiac feals copulate in the fame tnanuci-, only, after fportiag in 
ihe fca for fome tine, tbcy come on (hort; foi tl;at purpofc, 



mal, is fmall, oblong, and almoft fquare; the noftrils are fUled 
with fliort briftles ; the gape, or riftus, is fmall ; the lips are double; 
near the junftion of the two jaws the mouth is full of white tu»- 
bular briftles, which ferve the fame ufe as the laminae in whales, 
to prevent the food running out with the water ; the lips are alfo 
full of briftles, which fei've inftead of teeth to cut the ftrong roots of 
the fea plants, which floating afliore are a fign of the vicinity of thefe 
animals. In the mouth are no teeth, only two flat white bones, one 
in each jaw, one above, another below, with undulated furfaces, 
which ferve inftead of grinders. 

The eyes are extremely fmall, not larger than thofe of a flieep ; 
the iris black ; it is deftitute of ears, having only two orifices, fo 
minute that a quill will fcarcely enter them ; the tongue is pointed 
and fmall ; the neck is thick, and its jun6tion with the head 
fcarce diftinguifliable, and the laft always hangs down. The cir- 
cumference of the body near the flioulders is twelve feet, about the 
belly twenty, near the tail only four feet eight ; the head thirty- 
one inches ; the neck near feven feet ; and from thefe meafure- 
ments may be coUedted the deformity of this animal. Near the 
ihoulders are two feet, or rather fins, which are only two feet two 
inches long, and have neither fingers nor nails, beneath are concave, 
and covered with hard briftles ; the tail is thick, ftrong, and hori- 
zontal, ending in a ftiff black fin, and like the fubftance of whalebone, 
and much fplit in the fore part, and flightly forked, but both cods arc 
of equal lengths, like that of a whale. 

l*he fkin is very thick, black, and [full of inequalities, like the 
bark of oak, and fo hard as fcarcely to be cut with an ax, and has 
no hair on it; beneath the Ikin is a thick blubber, which taftes 
like oil of almonds. The flefli is coarfer than beef, and will not 
foon putrefy. The young ones tafte like veal : the (kin is ufed for 
ihoes, and for covering the fides of boats. 

The Ruffians call this animal nmorikaia korowa, or fea cow ; and 
kapuftnik, or eater of herbs. 

Manati of Guiana The head of this animal hangs downward ; 

the feet are furniflied with five toes ; body ahnoft to the tail of an 
uniform thicknefs ; near its junftion with that part grows fuddenly 
thin; tail flat, and in form of a fpatula, thickeft in the middle, grow- 
ing thinner towards the edges. 

Inhabits the rivers and fea of Guiana ; it grows to the length of 
fijrteen or eighteen feet ; is covered with a dulky Ikin with a few 

3 C a hairs. 


hairs. Thofe meafiired by Dampier were ten or twelve feet long j 
their tail twenty inches in length, fourteen in breadth, four or five 
thick in the middle, two at! the edges ; the largeft weighed twelve 
hundred pounds ; but they arrive at far greater magnitude. 

Oronoko Manati. — This is the fpecies to which M. deBuffon has in 
his fupplement given the name of Lc petit Lamantia de V Ajnerique, and 
fays it is found in the Oronoko, Oy apoc, and the rivers of Ama- 
zons. Father Gumilla had one taken in a diftant lake, near the Ore* 
noko, which was fo large that twenty- fcven men could not draw it 
out of the water : on cutting it open, he found two young ones, 
which weighed twenty-five pounds a»piece. 

We fufpeft that the manati of the Amazons, &c, never vifit the 
fea, but are perpetually refident in the frefti waters. 

Thefe animals abound in certain parts of the eaftern coafts and 
rivers of South-America, about the bay of Honduras, fome of the 
greater Antilles, the rivers of Oronoque, and the lakes formed by it; 
and laftly, in that of the Amazons, and the Guallaga, the Pafta9a, 
and moft of the others which f?.ll into that vaft river : they are found 
even a thoufand leagues from its mouth, and feem to be llopt from 
making even an higher advance, only by the great cataraft, the 
Pongo of Borja. They fometimes live in the fea, and often near the 
mouth of fome river, into which they come once or twice in twenty- 
four hours, for the fake of brouzingon the marine plants which grow 
within their reach ; they altogether delight more in brackifh or 
fweet water, than in the fait ; and in fliallow water near lo\v 
land, and in places fecure from fnrges, and where the tides run 
gently. It is faid that at times they frolic and Jeap to great heights 
out of the water. Their ufes were very confiderable to the priva. 
teers or buccaneers in i\\e time of Dampier. Their flefla and fat 
are white, very fweet and falubrious, and the tail of a young female 
was particiilai ly efteemed. A fuckling was held to be moil deUcious, 
and eaten roarted, as were great pieces cut out of the belly of the 
old animals. 

The /kin cut out of the belly, for that of the back was too thick, 
was in grtat requeft for the purpofe of faftening to the fides of ca- 
noes, and forming a place for the infertion of the oars. The thicker 
parr of the ikiii, cut frefli into lengths of two or three feet, fcrves foj 
whips, and become, when dried, as tough as wood. 

Bcfides thefe, an animal has been difcovered on the coaft of 
America to which the name of Sea Ape has been given j but it ap- 

I pears 


pears to have been feen in only one folitary inftance, and there- 
fore it appears unneceiTary, except in a profeired hiilory of animals, 
to add any account of it, 


£at,-!— This fingul^r animal is diftinguifhed from every other qua-? 
druped by being furniflied with wings, and feems to pofTefs a middle 
nature between four-footed animals and birds : it|s allied to the one 
by the faculty of flying only, to the other botli by its external and 
internal ftrufture : in each refpeft it has the appearance of an im- 
perfeft animal. In walking, its feet feem to be entangled with its 
wings, and it drags its body on the ground with extreme aukward- 
nefs. Its motions in the air cio not feem to be performed with eafe: 
it raifes itfclf from the ground with difficulty, and its flight is laboured 
^nd ill direfted ; from whence it is has very fignificantly been called 
the Flitter Moufe. There are feveral varieties of the l)at kind, fe- 
veral of which are found in different parts of the continent of Ame« 
fica. — See Bir^s, 


( 382 ) 




N the following accouot of the birds of America, nothing more is 
attempted than an enumeration of the fpecies of the difteient genera 
found on that continent ; the divifion and order of Mr. Pennant is 
followed, and defcriptivs charafters of each genus, in general, at- 
tended to. As it was impoffible in a work of this kind to enter into % 
defcription of the different fpecies of each genus, we hope the me- 
thod adopted will prove more acceptable and advantageous than ^ 
mere catalogue of either popular or fyftematic names. 



Sillf ftraight, hooked only at the end ; edges cultrated, bafe c<w 

vered with a thin Ikin. — Noftrih, differing in different fpecies.—. 
Tongxey large and flefhy. — Head, cheeks, chin, and often neck, 
either naked or covered only with down or ihort hairs ; the neck re. 
traftile. — Claw, often hanging over the breaft. — Legs zndifeet, co» 
vered with great fcales j the firft joint of the middle toe conneded to 
that of the outmoft by a ftrong membrane. — Claivs^ large, littlo 
hooked, and very blunt. — InJiJes of the wing covered with down. 


Charadlers — R///, ftraight, blunt at the tip.— flV^^, featberlcfs, 
covered behind with naked ikin or foft down. — Ncck^ retraftile.r^ 
l^gsy covered with fcales.— The firft joint of the middle toe connected 
to the outermof: by a ilrong membrane. 

Of this genus there are five fpecies in America, three of which are 
found in the United States, and the other two in South- America. 



(Jen. 1. FALco. 

Charafter. — Bill, hooked, fjrnifhed at its bafe with a ftrong 
Xnembrane or cere. — Head and neck covered with feathers. —Z-ffi and 
^eet covered with Icales. Middle toe conne£led with the outmofl: 
by a ftrong membrane.— C/i^iw, long, much hooked, that of the 
outmoit toe the Icaft.— Fr//wA' larger than the male. 

This genus admits of four dlvifions, of which there are in Ame- 
rica as follows : eagles, ten fpecies ; hawks, fifteen ; falcons, thir- 
teen ; kites, two ; of thefe, fome are peculiar to South- America, 
©thers to the North, and fome common in both. 


Chara£ter.-5;7/, hooked, without a cere.-^^r///, oblong.— J^y^;-, 
very large and protuberant, iiirrounded by a circle of feathers.— 
Head, large, round, and full of feathers. — Ears, large and open.— 
Outermoft toe verfatile. 

This genus contains the owls, which are ranged in two divifions, 
the eared^ and the earlefs ; of the former there are three fpecies, and 
©f the latter fourteen fpecies known in America. 



This genus includes a clafs of birds that form the conne<5Ung link 
between the rapacious birds of the preceding order and the pies ; they 
are called Shrieks, or Butcher birds j their hills are ftraio-ht, hooked 
only at the cx\ds,.— Tongue jagged at the point.— T»« divided at the 
origin.— And tall cuneiform. Of this genus there are fourteen fpe- 
cies known in America and the Weft-Indies. 


This genus contains the whole race of parrots, parroquets, Src. 
Bill, hooked from the bafe : upper mandible moveable. — NoJIrilsi 
round, and placed in the bafe of the hxW.—Tongue, broad and blunt at 
the end.— i/ffl^, large; crown flat.— Z^o-^, fliort.— 7'<7^rj, two 
backward and two forward. Of this there are nearly fifty fpecies 
known in South-America, and we believe only one or two in North- 


The charafter of this genus h—Bill, exceeding large, hollow 

convex, ferrated outwards; both mandibles curved at the tip. 

NoJIriisj fmall and round, placed clofe to the he^d.-.-To/z^utf Jon», 



and feathered on the edges.— F^r/, in moft of the fpecies, fcanforJ^ 
It contains the Toucans and Motmots ; of the former there are nine 
fpecies, and of the latter only one ; they are fuppofed to be peculiar 
to South- America. 


The characters of this genus are — Bill, comprefled, gfeatly arched* 
half oval, thin, cultrated at the top. — Nojlrih, round. — Tocs^ two 
backward and two forward. — Ten feathers in the tail. 

The only bird in this genus is the Ani, of which there are only two 
fpecies ; il is, we beheve, peculiar to America. 


Bill., ftrong, upper mandible a little convex, edges cultrated.-— 
}foftrih, covered with briftles, reflefted over them. — Tongue, divided 
at the end. — Toes, three forward and one backward, the middle 
joined to the outmoft as far as the firft joint. This genus includes 
the ravens, crows, rooks, jays and magpies, moft of which occur 
5n every climatCw There is one fpecies of the raven ; four of the 
crow; four of the daw; fix of the jay; and four of the magpie* 
Found in America and the Weil-Indies. 


Billy ftraight, bending a little towards the end, edges cultrated.— 
^ojirihy narrow and naked. — Toes, three forward, divided to their 
origin ; one backward. This genus contains the Rollers, of which 
there are two fpecies found in Sonth-Americh. 


Bilt, ftraightj conic, very fliarp-pointod, edges cultrated, in- 
clining inwards, mandibles of equal length. — Nojlrils, fmall, placed 
at the bale of the bill, and partly covered. — longnc, divided at the 
end. — Toci, three forward aiid one backward ; the middle joined 
near the bale to the outmoft one behind. The Oriolus are in gene- 
ral inhabitants of America ; there being twenty^feven fpecies enume- 
rated on that continent, out of forty-five, all that are known.* 


* Of this genus the Baltimore Oriole defcrVes particular notice ; the heiJ, throar, 
neck, and vippor part of the back of the ni. k, is dclcribcd to be black ; the Icfler co- 
verts of the *\ 111.* orange; the greater black, tipt with v/hite ; the bread, belly, lower 
part of the back, and coverts of the tail, of a bright orange ; the primaries diilkyi 
edged with wliite ; the two middle feathers of the tail black ; the lower part of the fame 
colour, the remaining part orange ; and the legs black. The head and back of the fe- 

\ ' ' I 





OF American birds. 385 


JiUi, convex, knife fliaped, fomewhat naked at the bafe.— T^tf^Kf, 
fentire, fomewhat enlarged and flefliy, ftiarp at the end.— No/r///, 
fmall, hear the bafe of the bill.— -T'*?^^, three forward, one backward, 
the middle conne6led at the bafe to the outmoft.— C/rt:w, hooked and 
fliarp. Of the Grade, which form this genus, there are about twelve 
fpecies, none of which are found in Europe, and only four or five 
known in America. 


This genus embraces a clafs of South-American birds, inhabiting 
Cayenne ahd Brafil, of which there is only three fpecies. They have 
the Ifill fliort, thick and convex.— No^ri Is, covered with thick 
bridles. — Toes^ two backward and two forward.— Lrg-J, feathered 
down to the toes— and the ta!l confiding of twelve feathers* 

GEN. 10. BUCCO. 

The Tamatia, or Barbets, that conftitute this genus, are likewife 
chiefly South- American birds ; on that part of the continent there are 
feven fpecies found, but none to the North, The iill of this bird 
is ftrong, flraight, bending a little towards the point ; bafe, covered 
with ftrong briftles, pointing downwards. — Noftrih^ hid in the fea- 
thers. — Ttffj, two backward and two forward, divided to their origin. 
--laily cohfifting of ten weak feathers. 


Of the Cuckoo, which forms this clafs, there are five fpecies fourid 
in North-Araericaj and nine in the South. Charafters of this genua 
are, bill, weak, a little bending.— A^?'-//^, bounded by a fmall 
t\m.—To7iguey iiiort and pointed. — Toes, two forward and two back- 
ward. — tail, cuneatedj confifting of ten foft feathers. 

inalc is orange, edged with pale brown ; the tovcrts of t^e wings of the fame colour^ 
marked with a fiilgle bar of white ; the under fide of the body and coverts of the tail 
yellow 5 the tail dulky, edged with yellow. The length both of the male and fcm'Je is 
feven inches. This l>ird fufperids its jicft to the horizontal forks of the tulip and po{>hr 
trees, formed of the filaments of fome tough plants, curioufly woven, mixed with wool, 
and lined with hairs. It is of a pear ihapc, open at top, with a hole on the fide through 
which the young difchargc their excrements, and are fed. In fome )>arts of North- 
America, this fpecies, frorti its brilliant colour, is called the Fiery Hangncft. It is 
named the Baltimore bird fjom its colours, refembling thofc in tht arms of the late Lord 
Baltimoit, whofc family were proprietors of Marj'land, 

V«i.. IV. 3 D^ ^^^* 


CEN. 12. PICUS. 

The charafters of this genus are — Bill^ flraight, ftrong, angular', 
and cuneated at the end. — NoJIrils, covered with bridles, and re- 
fle(51:cd down. — Tongue, very long, flender, cylindric, bony, hard, 
jagged at the end, niiirile. — Toes, two foiward and two backward. 
■■• — Tail, confiding of ten hard, ftiff, fharp-pointed feathers. This 
genus is formed of the Woodpeckers, which may be divided into three 
geneial clafles, green, black, and variegated or fpotted ; of the 
green Woodpecker, eleven fpecies have been found in America ; of 
the black, fix ; and of the variegated, twenty-one ; belides two fpe- 
cies of a fmall bird called Woodpecker Creepers, the Lcs Pic Grim- 
pneaux of Buft'. Thefe latter might perhaps be with more propriety 
elalTed in the genus Yunx. 


B'tU, iong, (Irong, flraight, and fliarp pointed. — Nojirlh, fmall, 
and hid in the feathers. — Tongue, fliort, broad, fliarp pointed. — 
Legs, llioit, three toes forward, one backw^ard, three tower joints ot 
the middle toe joined clofely to thofe of the outmoft. This genus 
includes the King Fiiliers, which M. BufFon divides into three clafles, 
the Gicat King Filher, of ivhich there are five fpecies found in Ame- 
rica ; the Middle King Fiflier, of which there are likewife five fpe- 
cies; and the Leafi: King Filher, of which we believe only one fpecies 
has been found on the new continent. 


Of the Jacamars, which conftitute this genus, we believe there arc 
only thi-ee fpecies known, and all found in South-America ; they 
have been confidered by many as a fpecies of the King Fiflier, and 
therefore clafled by Linnaeus Alccdo Galbula. The principal difference 
in chara6ler is in the tegs being feathered before to the toes, and^ the 
toes being difpofed, two backward and two forward. 

GER. 15. SITTA. 

The chara6ters of this genus are — Bill, flraight, on the lower man- 
dible a fmall angle. — Nojirih, fmall, covered with feathers reflefted 
over them. — Tongue^ fliort, horny at the edge, and jagged. — Toes^ 
three forward, and one backward, the middle toe joined clofely at 
the bale to both the outmoft. — Back toe as large as the middle one. 
The chief birds which form this genus are the Nuthatches, of which 
there are five fpecies found in Amaicn, two of which are common in 
>hc United States. 



GEN. l6- TODUS. 

■ Bill, thin, deprefled, broad, bafe befct with briftles, — Noftrih^ 
finall. — T'oesj three forward, one backward, conneSed like thole of 
the King Fifher. This genus contains the Todies, of uhich there 
are eight or nine fpecies known, all natives of the warm parts of v^nie- 
rica, or the Weft-India iflands. 


The hill of this genur. is quadrangular, a little iiicurvated, fliarp 
pointed. — tsojlrlh^ fmall, placed near the bafe. — Tongue, flender. — 
ToeSf three forward and one backward, the three lower joints of the 
iniddle toe clofcly joined to thofe of the outmofl. This genus con- 
tains the Bee Eater, of which five or fix fpecies have been found in 

GEN. 18, UPUPA. 

The chara^r of this genus is — Bill, arched, long, llenden, convex, 
fomewhat blunt and comprefled. — Noftrils, minute, fituated at the 
bafe of the bill. — Tongue^ obtufe, entire, triangular, and fliort. — 
7ff«, three forward and one backward, middle toe clofely united at 
the bafe to the oiitmofi:. This genus contains the Hoopoes and the 
Promerops, but there are only two fpecies of the latter found in 
America, and thefe in the fouthern parts, 


Charaders of this genus are — Bilh^ very flender, weak, and iiicur- 
vated — Nojlrihy fmall. — Totigue, not fo long as the bill, hard, and 
Iharpat the ^o\nx.— Toes, three forward and one backward, back toe 
large. — Clanxjs, long and hooked. This genus contains the birds 
commonly called Creepers, of which there arp twenty fpecies known 
on the American continent. 


Bill, flender and weak ; in fome ftraight, in others incurvated. — 
Nojirils, minute. — Tongue, very long, formed of two conjoined cy- 
lindric tubes, mifiile. — Toes, three forward, one backward, — Tail 
confifts often feathers. 

This genus comprehjends the various Humming Birds, or Honey 
Suckers, which form a numerous clafs, not lefs than fifty-fix fpecies 
ar§ found in the different parts of the new continent. 

^eavy bodies, fhort wings, very convex ; ftrong, arched, fliort 
bills: the upper mandible flnitting over the edges of the lower. 

^ D a The 


The flefh delicate -and of excellent nutriment ; ftrong legs ; tqes 
joined at the bafe, as far as the iiril joint, by a ftrong nnemb.rane. 
Claws broad, formed for fcratching up the ground. More than 
twelve feathers in the tail. 

Granivorous, feminivorous, infeftivorous, fwift runners, of flior^ 
flight; often polygamous, very prolific, lay their eggs on the hare 
ground. Sonorous, querelous, and pugnacious. 

Or, with bills flightly convex ; granivorous, feminivorous, infe£tir 
yorous ; long legs, naked above the knees : the genus that cpnne6^s 
the land and the water-fowl. Agreeing with the cloven-fpoted water- 
fowl in the length and nakednefs of the legs, and the fewnefs of it? 
eggs ; difagreeing in place, food, and form of bill, and number of 
feathers in the tail. 


This genus includes the cock and the pheafants ; the forrner are 
domefticated in all the fettled parts of America ; of the latter there 
are eight fpecies k^own on the continent, all natives of South- 

Charafters of the pheafant are — Bill, convex, fhort and ilrong.-- 
Nffj^riis, iiWalL-— Tail, bending downwards. 


This genus contains the turkey, of which but one fpecies is known, 
and that, though domefticated in moil countries, is a native of 
North-America.— ,5///, convex, fliort and &roug.--Nq^nls, open, 
pointed at one end, lodged in a — Tongue, Hoped on both 
fides toward the eud and pointed.— jfii-a^/ and Ned, coveied vvich a 
naked tuberofe flefli, with a long ficfliy appendage hanging from the 
bafe of the upper mandible. — Tail, broad, conlifting of eighteeu 
feathers extenlible. 

CEN. 3. CRAX. 

The curaflb forms this genus as well as the Penelope. The 
charafters are — Bil^, convex, ftrong and thick, the bafe covered 
with a cere often mounted with a large noh. ---K oft ri Is, fmall, lodged 
in the cere.— Head, fometimes adorned with a creft of feathers curl- 
ing forwards.— Tl:^;//, large and ftraight. There are four fpecies of 
this genus, and three of the penelope found in South-America. 
The moft eifentia! difference in the two genufes is, that the Bill in 
thofe of the penelope is naked at the bafe. 




This genus includes three fubdivilions : i. The grous and ptar-? 
inigans. — Bill, convex, ftrong and (lioit ; a naked I'carlet (kin above 
each eye.—Nq/?riIs, fm.iU and hid in the feathers.— Tb^^^r, pointed. 
— Lr^s, feathered to the toes. Of jhefe there are fcvcn Inecies, found 
in the coldeft p^rts of North-America. 

2. The partridj!;es and quails ; thcfe have no naked fldn above the 
eyes.— The 'Nnjlrih are covered with a callous proinincru rim ; and 
the Legs naked, with the exception of two fpccies. Of thcfe there 
are eight fppcies found in the temperate and warm parts of America. 

3. The tinamous, which are peculiar to South-America, and of 
which five fpecies are known. Thefe birds refemble the pheafant^ 
in their habits.— "5///, long and blunt at the u^t.—NoJlriU^ placed in 
the middle with a very wide gap. — Throaty fprinkled with feathers. 
—Tdil, very ^xoii.—Hhid loe, curtailed and ufelefs for running. 


*rhis ggnus includes -two fpecies of a bird called the trumpeter, 
one of which is found in Africa, and one in South-America ; the 
latter is called the agmi or golden-breafted trurnpeter, of which 
iherjs is a beautiful fpecimen in the Leverian Mnfeum. Charailer 
of this genus— i>/7/, fliort, upper mandible a little convex — Nojlrihy 
oblong, funk and pervious.— -7£>;;^af, cartilaginous, flat, torn or 
fringed ai the end. — Lcgs^ naked a little above the knees.— T<?^j, 
three before and one behind, with a round protuberance beneath 
the hind toe, which is at a fmall dillaace from the ground. 


j5/7/, weak, flender, ftraight at the bafe, with a fofc protuberant 
fubftance, it) which the noftrils are lodged. — Tonquc, entire. — Legs^ 
iliort and red. — Tocs^ divided to the origin. Swift and diftant flight, 
walking pace. Plaintive note, or rc'o/V/o', peculiar to the order. The 
male inflates or fwells up its breaft in courtlliip. Female lays but 
two eggs at a time. Male and female fit alternUely, and feed their 
young, ejecting the meat out of their ilomachs into the mouths of 
the neftlings. Granivorous, feminivorous. The neft fimple, in 
trees, or holes of rocks, or walls. 


There is only one genus of this order ; it is therefore needlefs to 
repeat the charadlers ; it includes the pigeons and turtles, of which 
there are known in different parts of America twelve fpecies. 

3 ^ ORDER 



Bodies^ from the fize of a thruili to that of the golden-crefled 
wren. The enliveners of the woods and fields ; fprightly and much 
in motion ; their nefts very artificial ; monogamous, baccivorous, 
granivorous, feminivorous, infcftivorous ; their u^ual pace hopping, of 
a few running. Short flyers, except on their migrations only, All 
have three toes before, one behind. 


5///, ftraight, depreffed.- — 'Nojlrih^ guarded above by a prominent 
rim. — 'Tongue, hard and c\o\tn.'^-Toes^ middle toe joined to the out- 
moft as far as the firft joint. The flares conflliute this genus, of 
which fix fpecies only are found in America. 


J5///, ftraight, obtufely corinated at top, bending a little at the 
point, and llightly notched near the end of the upper mandible.-^ ' 
Nqfirils^ oval and naked. — T.o7i-^ue^ llightly jagged at the end. — Toes^ 
the middle toe joined to the outmoft as far as the firft joint. — Back 
toe, very large. This genus includes the thruflies and blackbirds, of 
which there are twenty-eight fpecies known in America. To this 
genus we muft alfo affign a race of birds chiefly found in South- 
America, called ANTERS, on account of their feeding on that infeft j 
they are defignated American and nightingale anters; of the former 
there are eight fpecies known, befide varieties, of the latter only 
two. Latham confiders the whole as different fpecies of the thrufli, 
and Gmelin is evidently of the fame opinion, by ranging them in this 


The charafter of this genus is — Billy llraight, a httle convex 
above and bending towards the point ; near the end of the upper 
mandible a fmall notch on each fide. — Nofirils, liid in briftles. — 
Middle toe, clofely connefted at the bafe to the outmoft. This gen^s 
comprehends the chatterers or cotingas, of which there are ten fpecies 
known in America. 


The principal charaders of this genus avc—Bill, conically 
bunched at the bafe of the front rounded towards the head, 
under mandible infleded in its natural margin. — Nojrils, placed in 
the bafe of the bill, minute and rounded. — Tongucy entire. 



The birds in America of this genus are the grosbeaks, crofsbills, 
and bulfinches; of the two former there are about twenty fpecies, 
and of the latter five, known upon the American continent. 


The charaders of this genus which includes the buntings are-— 
J5///, ftrong and conic, the fides of each mandible bending inwards ; 
in the roof of the upper a hard knob, of ufe to break and com* 
minute hard feeds. There are fixteen fpecies of this bird known in 


Thetangares which form this genus are almoft all of thetti natives 
of America ; there are only forty-fix fpecies known, forty-three of 
which have been found <in that continent. The charafters are — ■ 
Bill, conoid, si little inclining towards the point, upper mandible 
(lightly ridged and notched at the end. 


This extenfive and multifarious genus includes the finches, ca- 
naries, fiflcins, linnets and fparrows, all of which; the canaries ex* 
cepted, are found in America, to the amount of near fixty fpecies ; 
the diflinguifhing charafter of this genus is the BUI, perfedtly conic, 
flender towards the end, and very fliarp pointed. 

GEN*. 8. phVtOtoma. '" ' 

There is only one fpecies of this genus kn^w'n", which is the rara 
of South-America. Its diftinguifliing charafters are — BUI, conical, 
ftraight and ferrated. — Ne^rils, oval. — Tongue, fliort and blunt; it 
fcream.s with a raucous interrupted voice, crops and tears up the 
tender plants, and makes moll deftruflive vifits to garden^. 


The characters of this genus are— 5///, flatted at the bafe, almofl: 
triangular, notched at the end of the upper mandible, and befet 
v/ith briftles. — Toes, divided as far as their origin. The fly-catchers 
conftitute this genus, of which thirty-nine fpecies axe known in 


Bill, fhort, flender, bending a little towards the end, fliarp pointed. 
-^Nojirils, covered with feathers and briftles. — Tongue, cloven at the 
end. — Toe^y divided to the origin. — Clavj of the back toe very lon^. 
This genus is formed of the larks, of which there are, we believe, 
♦uly fix fpecies yet found in Am^Hca. 


^^± GENEltAL DfcsCRlPtlOR 


The chara<5lers of this genus are — Blll^ awl ftiaped, flraight, ilid 
mandibles nearly equal.— iVio/?n7j, nearly oval. — Torigjte., jagged and 
notched. Tlie birds found in America which are included in this 
genus are, the wagtail t\ro fpecies ; the warblers and wrens eighteen 
fpecies ; the fauvctte or petty chaps five fpedes 5 the fig-eaters* 
twenty-eight fpecies; the pitpits five fpecies; the red ftart, yel- 
low neck worm-eater, middle bill, Guiana red tail, &c. one or two 
fpecies each. 

GEN. 12. PIPRA. 

This genus includes the manakins, of which there are known 
about twenty-fix fpecies, moft of them natives of the hot parts of 
America. Chara61:ers — Bill^ fliort, ftrong and hard, flightly incur- 
vated. — NoJIrih, naked. — focs^ the middle clofely united with the 
outmoft as far as the third joint. — Tall, fliort. 


Charafters — Bill^ flraight, a little comprelTed, flrong, hard, and 
Iharp-pointed. — Noflrlh^ round and covered with briftles reflefted 
over them. — 'Tongue, as if cut off at the end, and terminated by 
three or four briftles. — 1'ccs^ divided to their origin ; back toe very 
large and ftrong. This genus is formed of the titmice, a remarka- 
ble prolific race, laying from eighteen to twenty eggs at an hatch* 
There appears to be about fixteen fpecies known in America. 


The characters of this genus are — Bill^ fliort, broad at the bafe, 
fmall at the point, and a little bending.' — "Nojlrils^ open.^^Tongue^ 
fliort, broad and cloven. — Legs, fliort. — Tail, i'ovked.'—J'Fh/gs, long. 
It includes the iwallows, martins and fwiits, of which there arc 
eleven fpecies known in America. 


Bill, fliort, hooked at the end, and flightly notched near the point* 
— NoJIrils, tubular and a little prominent. — Mouth, vaftly wide ; on 
the edges of the upper part, between the bill and eyes, leven fl:ifF 
briftles.— 7" w_§-«f, fmall, entire at the end.— 'Lro.f, fliort, feathered 
before as low as the toes. — Toes^ joined by a ftrong membrane as far 
as the firft joint.— -C/d-iu of the middle toe broad-edged and fer* 
rated.— Trt/V confifts of ten feathers, not foiked. This genus in- 
cludes the goat fuckers, forming fifteen fpecies, fourteen of which, 
according to fome, are natives of America, according to others, ar* 
nine only. 




Very great and heavy bodies. Wings imperfeft ; very fmall, and 
ufelefs for flight, but affiftant in running. FJefli coarfe and hard of 

Strtithious is a new coined word to exprefs this order ; for thefe 
birds cou'.d not be reduced to any of the Linnrean divi|ions. 

This order contains but two genera, the dodo and the oftrich; of 
the firft none have been found in America. 


The characters of this -genus are-— ^///, fmall, floping, and a 
little deprefred.--^/^/«'^/, fmall, unfit for flight.— Lfo-j, long, flirong, 
and naked above the knees. It includes the oftrich tribe, being four 
fpecies, one only of which, the touyou, or grey cafowary, is found 
in America ; it is fix feet high, and in its habits, &c. is in many 
refpedts fimilar to the oftrich, to which, however, it is much inferior. 


For the moil part migratory, Ihifting from climate to climate^ 
from place to place, in order to lay their eggs, and bring up their 
young in full fecurity; the thinly inhabited north is their principal 
breeding place ; returning at flated periods, and, in general, yielding 
to mankind delicious and wholefome nutriment. All the cloven- 
footed, or mere waders, lay their eggs on the ground ; thofe with 
pinnated feet form large nefts, either in the water or near it. Fronm 
the firil v,-e muft except the heron and the night-heron, vi'hich build 
in trees. 

All the web-footed fowl either lay their eggs on the ground, or 
on the flielves of lofty cliffs ; and none perch, except the corvorant, 
fliugg, and one or two fpecies of ducks. 

All the cloven-footed water fowl have long necks and long legs, 
naked above the knees, for the convenience of wading in water ia 
fearch of their prey. Thofe that prey on fifh have flrong bills ; 
thofe that fearch for minute infedts, or wcrras that Ivirk in mud, have 

Vol, IV. ^ E ilender 


{lender weak bills, and olfadory nerves of moft exqi:ifite fenfe; for 
their food is out of fight. 

As the name implies, their toes are divided, fome to their origiH ; 
others have, between the middle ■ and outmoft toe, a fmall mem- 
brane as far as the firft joint. Others have both the exterior toes 
connefted to the middlemoil in the fame manner ; and, in a few, 
thofe webs reach as far as the fecond joint; and fuch are called Semi' 

Of the web-footed fowl, the FLuiiiugo, the Avofettd and Courier^ 
partake of the nature cf both the cloven and web-footed orders ; 
having webbed feet, long legs, naked above the knees, and long 
necks. The other web-footed water-fowl being very much on the 
element, have fiiort legs, placed far behind, and long necks ; and, 
when on land (by reafon of the fituation of their legs) an aukward 
waddling gait. 

The make of the cloven-footed water-fowl is light, both as t» 
flvin and bones ; that of the web-footed ftrong, 



The bird which conftitutes this genus is the Spoonbill, of which, 
according to Linnaeus and Briflbn, there are three fpecies ; but ]\T. 
Buflfon contends that there is only one, and that the other two are 
varieties : whether varieties or different fpecies, two out of the three 
are found in South-America and the Weft-Indies.— The ^///is long, 
broad and thin, the end widening into a form like the bowl of a 
fpoon, rather round at the end. — Nojirih^ fmall, piaced near the 
bafe.— 7<3//^7i;c, fmall and pointed.— 2'"Vf^, femipalmated. 


The charaflers of this genus are— Bill, bending down at the point, ' 
with a horn or with a tuft of feathers ereft near the bafe of the bill. 
—No^rils, oval. — Toes, divided almoft to their origin with a very 
Imall membrane between the bottoms of each. The bird which 
conftitutes this genus is the fcreamer, of which there is only two 
fpecies, found in South-America. The horned fcreamer has likewife 
on each wing two long fpurs ; the horn on its head is three or four 
inches long, and two or three lines in diameter at the bafe : of the 
ipurs on the wings, which project forward, and are the apophyfes 
I of 


Hoopiisrr- Ck^xistk 


of the metp.carpnl bone, rifing from the anterior part of thefe extre- 
mities, tiie uppci ipur is largeft, of a triangular form, two inches 
long, and nine lines broad at the bafe, fomewhat curved, and ter- 
minating in a point ; the lower fpur is only four lines long, and 
of the fame breadth at its origin. 


Of the Jabirou, which forms this genus, only one fpecies is 
Icnown ; it is an inhabitant of South- America. —5///, long and large, 
both mandibles bending upwards, the upper triangular.— iV^;v7j, 
fmall : according to Marcgrave, no tongue.— Toes, divided. The 
bird is as large as a fwan, the neck thick, and the bill in general 
meafures about thirteen inches. 


JSIIl, broad, flat, with a keel along the middle, like a boat reverfed. 
•'-Nq/Iri/s, fmall, lodged in a furrow.— T^j^j, divided. The bird 
forming this genus is the Boatbill, a bird approaching by its man- 
ners the heron tribe. Linnsus mentions two fpecies, but it ap. 
pears there is only one and two varieties ; it is a native of South- 


The charaders of this genus are- -5/7/, ftraight, fliarp, long, 
flattifti, with a furrow extending from the nollrils to the Up.—NoJIri/sy 
linear. —Tongue., {l\arp.—Feef, four-toed. This genus contains, 
the herons, ftorks, cranes and bitterns : they are ranged in five fub- 
divifions ; the crowned, whofe bill is fcarcely longer than the head ; 
the cranes, whofe head is bald ; the florks, whofe orbits are naked ; 
the herons, whofe mid toe is ferrated inwards ; and thofe which 
have the bill gaping in the middle. Of the florks there are two 
fpecies found in America, and two of the crane ; a figure of one of 
which, the hooping crane ^ we have given.* Of the herons thirty- 


* It is as tall as our Inrgeft crane?, but of a Wronger and tiiicker make, its bill 
longer, its head bigger ; its neck, and legs not fo llcnder : all the plumage is white, 
except the great quills of the wings, which are ijlack, and the head, which is brown ; 
the crown is callous and covered with black hairs, ihaggling and delicate, under which 
the reddifh (kin appears naked ; a fimilar fkia covers the cheeks : the tnft of loofe 
feathers in the tail is flat and pendent : the bill is furrowed above, and iwlcntcd ar. 
the edges near the tip ; it is brown and fix incites long. Catclby has dcfcribed this 
bird from an entire fkin given him by an Indian, who told him that thefe birds fre- 
quent, in great numbers, the lower parts of the rivers near the fca in the beginning of 

3 E a fpring, 



feven fpecies are Known on that continent, and nine fpecies of the 


The bird which forms this geni>s is the Ibis, of which two fpecies 
ojily are found on the new continent, and both in the fouthern part. 
Charaders— 5///, long, thick at the bafe, wholly incurvated. — Eyes, 
lodged in the bafe. — Face^ naked. — Nojirih, linear. — Tongue., fliort 
and broad. — Toes^ connefted at the bafe by a membrane. . 


This genus contains a variety of fpecies, known by the names of 
Curlews, Whimbrels, Snipes, Woodcocks, Godwits, Red Shanks, 
Green Shanks and Yellow Shanks. They may all, however, be 
ranged under two names. Curlews and Snipes; of the former (the 
charadlers of which are — Bill, long, (lender and incurvated. — Face.), 
covered with feathers. — Nojlrih, longitudinal near the bafe.-— 
'Tongue, Ihort and fliarp pointed. — Toes, connected together as far 
as the firfl joint by a Ilrong membiaue) there are eight fpecies ia 
America; of the latter nineteen fpecies. Charafters — Bill, long, 
(lender, ftraight and weak. — Nojirils, linear, lodged in a furrow.— 
Tongue, pointed and flcnder.— iTffi, divided or very flightly con- 
.neiled ; back toe very fmall. ' • 

fpiing, and return to the mountains in fummer. '' This fa(£l," fays Cateftjy, " has 
been fince conlirmed by. a wliite, who informed me, that thefe cranes are very noify, 
:,nd are feen in tlie Savannas at the mouth of the Akamaha, and other rivers near St, 
Auguftine in Florida, and alfo in Carolina, but that they are never found further 

Yet it is certain that they advance into the higher latitudes ; for the fame white 
cranes are found in Virginia, in Canada, and even in Hudfon's bay, as Edwards re- 
marks. — The fpecific charafter of the hooping crane, Ardea Americana, is, " Its 
top, its nape and its temples, are naked and papillous ; its front, its nape, and its 
primary wing quills are black ; its body is white : the extreme length is five feet 
feven inches." We extraft the following paflage relating to thefe birds from Mr. 
Pennant's Arflic Zoology: " They make a remarkable hooping noife ; this makes 
mc inaagine thefe to have been the birds, whofe clamour Captain Philip Amidas (the 
fiift Englifhman who ever fet foot on North-America) fo graphically dcfcribes, on his 
landing on the iOe of Wokokou, off the ccaft of North-Carolina. ' When,' fajs 
he, ' fuch a Hock of cranes (the moft part white) arofe under us with fuch a cry^ re- 
doubled by many echoes, as if an army of men had ihouted together.' This was in 
the month of July, which proves, that in thofe early days this fpecies bred in the then 
dcfert parts of the foutJiern provinces, till driven away by population, as was the cafe 
with the common crane in England, which .abounded in our iindrained fens till cuHJva- 
fiqn forced them entirely to quit our kingdom." Vol. ii. p. 44.2. 




The birds founds in America in this genus are known by feveral 
popular names, as the Turnftone, Knot, Lapwing, Purres, Sand- 
pipers, &c. They may almoil all be clafled under the name Sand^ 
piper, amounting in the whole to about eleven fpecies. Characters — 
Billy ftraight, flender, about an inch and a half long. — Nojlrils, 
imall. — Tongue^ flender.— 7 (7f5, divided, generally the two outmoft 
connefted at bottom by a fmall membrane. 


Of the Plover, which conftitutes this genus, there are ten known 
fpecies in America. ---Characlers---5///, ilraight, fliort as the head. 
'■-Nojirils, linear ; wants the back toe. 


A fingle fpecies confliitutes this genus ; it is called the Oyfter 
Catcher ; common to the old and new continents.— Its Bill is long, 
comprelfed, and the end c\\nt^.itA. — Nofirih, linear. — Tongucy 
fcarce one-third of the length of the h\\\.—Toes, only three, the 
middle one joined to the exterior by a ftrong membrane ; by the 
help of the bill raifes limpets from the rocks, and opens oyfters, 011 
which it feeds. 


The Jacana's conftitute this genus, of which ten fpecies are found 
in various parts of South- America, chiefly in Brafll. — The Bill Is 
flender, fliarp-pointed, bafe carunculated. — Nojlrils, fliort, fub- 
ovated, placed in the middle of the bill.— //?«o-j, armed on the front 
joint with a fliarp fliort fpur.— Tofj-, long, four on each foot, armed 
with very long and fliort fliarp-pointed claws, from which circum- 
ftance it has by fome been called the Surgeon. 

GtN. 12. RALLUS. 

Billf flender, a litt'e comprelfed and flightly incurvated.— A'<y?/-/7ji, 
{xmW.-- -Tongue^ rough at the tnd.—Boily, much comprelfed.— -T^//, 
very fliort. Of the rails, which form this genus, there are icyen. 
fpecies found on the new continent. 

GEN. 13. FUI.ICA. 

The Gallinule or Water-hen forms this genus, of which feven 
fpecies are found in different parts of the new continent. — The B:ll 
of this bird is thick at the bafe fl.opiug to the point ; the upper mat»- 
dible reaching far up the forehead, andnot carneous.-"Z/o<3')', cora- 
WQ^X^d.—WiiigSy fliort and concave,— 7cfi, long and divided to the 



origin.— Tally fliort, about the fize of a common pullet fix months 


This order contains only the Phalarope, the Coot and the Glebe. 

The Phalarope. This bird is clafTed by Linnaeus in the tringa 
genus ; but Briflbn forms a new genus, under the name of Phaia- 
ropus, from the fcallops on its toes. There are three fpecies of it 
found in America.— Charafters—^///, ftraight and {lender.— -Nojin'lsy 
niinutc.—' BorJy and Legs in every refpeft like the fandpiper.— -To^j, 
furniflied with fcalloped membranes. 

The Coot. This bird is found in America as well as in Europe; 
it frequents ponds and lakes, and may be conlidered as the beginning 
of the extenfive tribe of tr/^c aquatic birds, as it Is almoft conllantly 
on the water.— Its Bi/l is ihorr, ftrong, thick at the bafe, (loping to 
the end, the bafe of the upper mandible rifing far up the forehead, 
both mandibles of equal length.— A^<7/?r//j-, inclining to oval, nar- 
rovv and {hoYt.--Bcay, rompreiTed.— 7/V«^\f, fliort.—Trt//, fliort. — 
Tacs, long, furniflied with broad fcalloped membranes. The coot is 
clalled by Linnaeus in the fulica of the preceding order, but the 
Scalloped meir.bianes of its feet certainly removes it from that genus, 
however it may agree in other refpcds. 

The Glebe. The Bill of this bird is flrong, llender and fharp- 
pointed.— 7V(V?r.'7j-, \\ntm:-—Tv/iguc, llightly cloven at the end.--- 
Boily, deprtiicd.—Frai/jen, thick-fet, compac^l, very fmootli and 
glolly.— No tail. — l/'higs, fhort.— Lr^'j, placed very far behind, 
very thin, or m/ich compreffed, doubly ferrated behind.— 7"<7t'j, 
turnifned on each lide with a broad piain membrane. Linnaus 
has chilTed thele birds with the web-footed, by the name of Colym- 
bi. i ; but B; iilbn has fepurated them, and from the make of thtir 
teef, they to'.i'ul not with j-ropriety be clified with them. The Glebes 
are divided into two clalfts, the greater and the cbelhut or caft;ige- 
neux, of each <if which there arc three f{>eeies on the new continent. 


C E N . 1 . R E C i: li V IK O S T ]> A . 

This ,o;cnus contains the Avofets, of which there are but two 
ipecies, one of Vvhich is found in America. The legs of the avofet, 
I'.ke the flamingo, contrary to molt of the web-footed birds, arc 
veiy long: it has Hkewife another finguhir charai'l'cr, \'\z. the in- 
vcrfuMi of its bill, which is bent into the arc of a circle ; the fubftance 




of the hill IS foft and almoft membranous at its tip. — Hci^J^ neck, 
and upper part of the boJy^ of a pale buff colour ; the reft of the 
lower part of the body, white. — Back and primaries black ; leifer co- 
verts white, greater black ; beneath which is a long tranfverfe bar 
©f white. — Legs, dufky colour. — Feet., femipalmated, the webs bor- 
dering on the fides of the toes for a confiderable way. It is a nativa 
©f North-America, and Mr, Pennant imagines they are fometimcs 
found entirely white. 


This genus includes but one fpecies, the Flammant or Flamingo; 
■ — B///, thick, large, bending in the middle, forming a fliarp angle, 
the higher part of the upper part carinated, the lower compreiTed ; 
the edges of the upper mandible fliarply denticulated, of the lower 
tranfverfely fulcated. — NoJIrils, covered above with a thin plate, per- 
vious, linearly longitudinal. — 1o?igue, cartilaginous and pointed at 
the end ; the middle mufcular, bnfe glandular, on the upper part 
aculated. — Neck, very long. — Head, large. — Legs and tbigbs of a 
great length. — Feet, webbed, the webs extending as far as the claws, 
but are deeply femilunated. — Back toe, very fmall. When this bird 
has attained its full growth, it is not heavier than a wild duck, an<l 
is yet five ice^x. high.* 


Chnrafters — 57/, ftrong, bending in the middle, and hooked at 
the end of the upper mandible ; that of the lower mandible abrupt, 
and the lower part incluiing downwards. — NoJIrils, opening forward, 
and covered with a large convex guard. — No back toe. The birds 
in this genus are the Albatroffes. Thcfe birds, which iu the bulk 
of their bodies are fuperior to all the known fpecies of water-fowl, 
inhabit the fliores, iflands and feas within the tropics, along the 
coaft of Chili, and the extremities of America, but it never has been 
feen in the feas of the northern hemifphere. 

GEN. 4. ALCA. 

The Auks form this genus, of which there are four fpecies found 
about the new continent. Characters — Bill, thick, flrong, convex, 
and comprefTed. — Nojlrils, linear, placed near the edge of the man- 
dible. — Tong7ie. almoft as long as the bill. — No back toe,— Black on 
the back and white beneath, 

* Catcfby. 




The web-footed birds in this genus, that can be coniidered as be- 
longing to America, are only one fpecies of the Guillemot and two of 
the Diver. The chara6ters of the former are—Bil/, flender, (trong 
and pointed, upper mandible flightly bending towards the end ; bafe 
covered with ftiort foft feathers. — No^rihy lodged in a hollow near 
the bafe.- — Tongue, (lender, almoft the length of the bill. — No back 
toe. — Colour, in general, black on the back, and white on the breaft. 
Its weight is about twenty ounces. 

The l>in of the diver is ftrong and pointed, upper mandible the 
longeft, edges of each bending inwards.— iV<^/?r//j, linear, upper part 
divided by a fmall cutaneous ^ppendage,— Tongue, long and pointed^ 
ferrated at each fide near the hai'e.— Legs, very thin and fiat. — Toes, 
the exterior the longeft, back toe fmall, joined to fhe interior by a 
fmall membrane.-"?"^//, fliort. This bird is about the fize of a 


This genus contains only a fingle fpecies and a variety, both na- 
tives of North-America : it is fometimes called the Skimmer, from 
the manner in which it collefts its food on the water with the lower 
mandible ; by others it is called the Shearbill and Cutwater.— The 
£ill of this bird is greatly comprefled, lower mandible much larger 
than the upper.— iVo/?r//j, linear and pervious.— A fmall i'ack toe.—^ 
Tailj a little forked. In its habits and figure it refembies the gulls. 


This genus contains the Terns and the Nodies : of the former 
there are feven fpecies, all of which are found about the feas of Ame- 
rica ; of the latter we know of but one common to the fame fitua- 
tions ; indeed it is nothing but a fpecies of the tern rather fmaller. 
Charafters— 5///, fliort, flender and pointed.— JV^/??-//^, linear. — 
Tongue, flender and fliarp. — Wings, very long. — A fmall lack toe.'-' 
Tail, forked, 


Tke charafters of this genus, which comprehends the Gulls and 
Mews, names which only diftinguifli this family into the greater and 
lefTer gulls, are — Bill, {l:rong, bending down at the point, on the 
under part of the lower mandible an angular prominency. — NoJIrils^ 
oblong and narrow, placed in the middle of the hWL— Tongue, a 
little cloven.— 5(7/^, light.— /r/.w, long.— i^^j, fmall, naked above 



the VT\ee5.'-Back toe, fmall.— BrifTon has eighteen f-ecles of this 
genus, and we are inclined to think them as common to the fliores pi 
America as Europe. 


The Peterel, which forms this genus, inhabits uU parts of the 
ocean ; it braves and fports with the moft furious ftorms, and fome of 
the fpecves feem to enjoy thofe tremendous fcenes which fink the 
courage of the braveft men : they are found in great plenty in the 
feas near the cape of Good Hope and along the coalts of America, in 
the fa-ne parallels. The characters of this genus are— /?///, ftraight, 
except at the end, which is hooked.— iVo/r/Yx, cylindric and tubu- 
lar.- -Lf-^f, naked above the knees.— No back toe, but a (harp fpur 
pointing downwards jnflead, 


The. Merganfer is the fpecies that forms this genus ; it is found 
in the r.crth of Europe and north of America.— Its l>ill is flender, a 
little deprefled, fuiniflied at the end with a crooked nail; edges of 
each mandible very fharply ferrated.---JV^r.'7^, near the middle of 
the mandible fmall a:id {whovatcd.— Tongue, dender. —Feef, the ex- 
terior toe longer than the middle. The largeft birds of this fpecies 
arc between a duck and goofe, the fmaller about the fize of the 
duck. There are in the whole about feven fpecies known. 


This genus includes the whole of the duck tribe, under the name 
of Swan, Goofe, Duck, Widgeon, Teal, 8:c. of which near feventy 
fpecies are known in America ; of the fpecies of the fwan only one, 
of the goofe ten, the reft ducks, Sec. The diftinguifliing characters 
of this genus are— ^z7/, llrong, broad, flat or deprefled, and com- 
monly furniflied at the end with a nail, edges marked with fharp la- 
millse.— A'^oy^r///, fmall, oval. — Tongue, broad, edges near the bafe 
fringed. — Feet, middle toe the largeft. 


The birds in this genus which may be iaid to belong to, America, 
or found in its feas, are the Pelican, of which there are two fpecies 
and four varieties belonging to that coiuinent ; the Boobie?, fix fpecies ; 
the Frigat or Man of War bird ; and, according to the opinion of 
Buffon, the Garnet. The charafters of the pelican are---5/7/, long and 
ftraight, the end hooked or Hoping. — 'Nojlrlh, either entirely want- 
ing, or fmall and placed in a furrow which runs along the fides of 

Vol. IV, '\ F the 


the bill. — Face^ naked. — Gullet^ naked, and capable of great dif^ 
tenfion. — Ti'oes^ all four webbed. 


This genus is formed of the tropic birds ; a clafs of the winged 
tribe, whofe favourite haunts are the fequeftered iflands of India 
and America. There are three fpecies kiiown. — The bill is com- 
preffed flightly floping down, point fliarp, under mandible angular. 
— Nqfirils,, pervious.— 7l(»<rj, all four webbed.— 5«r7, cuneiform, two 
middle feathers tapering and extending to a vail length beyond the 


Chara£Vers— j5z7/, long, ftraight, fharp-pointed. — I^ccJc^ of a great 
length.— Fdc^ and gullet^ covered with feathers. — Toes, all four web- 
bed. The darter or anhinga is the only bird in this genus. We 
believe there are three fpecies, befides varieties, in the foutheru 
part of the new continent. 

GEN. 15. 

The penguin may be confidered as the link between birds and 
fifhes. — Its bill is ftrong and ftraight, bending only a little towards 
the ^o'xnX.—Totigue, covered with ftrong, (harp fpines, pointing 
backwards. ""^^/^^j, very fmall, pendulous, ufelefs for flight, co- 
lored with mere flat Ihafts.— ^<j^, covered with thick, fhort fea- 
thers, with broad Ihafts placed as compaftly as fcales. — Legs^ (hort 
and thick, placed entirely behind.— Tiow, four ftanding forward, the 
interior Ipofe, the reft webbed. — Tail, confifting of only broad 
ihafts. There are two fpecies found on the coafta of South- America.* 

■" We noticed at the beginning of tlii* account of American birds, that in the d^- 
■viCwm .ind orders wc had followed Mr. Pennant — the fevcral genera areas claffed bjj? 
Linrrerns, except where Qtherwife mentioacd. 


( 403 ) 





MPERFECT as the lift of American quadrupeds and birds muii 
be confefled to be, thofe of the reptiles, fiflies, and infefts muft be 
much more (o ; few have been the charaders who, with leifure and 
abilities, have pofTefled the inclination for thefe refearches, and 
thofe who have attempted any thing of this kind, have contented 
themfelves with very partial advances, or have found fuch difficulties 
as have prevented driy great progrefs ; they havcj however, done 
fufficient, vve trull, to llirriulate others to a farther purfuit, and we 
may reafonably hope that a few years will open to us a more parti- 
cular acquaintance with the woods, the marflies, the mountains, and 
waters of the new continent. The follov/ing lifts in a more particu-* 
lar manner refer to North-America, though perhaps the greater 
part are found all over the continent* 



Green Tortoife, . Teftudo, Mydas, 

Hawkbill do. . . =*- imbricata, ' 

Loggerhead do. . . —^ marina. Rali. 

Trunk do. . « Catejly, 

Soft-fhelled do. . 

Serrated do. . . ■*■■ ■ ■ — 

Chequered do. . * Carolina, 

Mud do. . . ' — -i 

Great Land do. called in the United States Gopher* 

3 F 2 rJtoc. 



Toad, '4 



Green, tree, frog. 


Cinereous, . 


Small green-frog, 


Rana, bufo, feveral fpecies. 
■■ ocellata, 

■ Caiejhy, 

- ■ ■■ arborea, 

•■ ' ' ■ ■ - Catejhy, 

Green-lizard, f 


Lacerta, crocodylus, 


'* This formidable animal has a vafl roouth, furnifhed with fharp teeth ; from the 
back to the end of the tail ferrated ; Ikln tough and brown, and covered on the fides 
witn tubercles. Grows to the length of from eighteen to twenty-three feet. 

This dreadful fpecids is found in the warmer parts of North-America, and moft nu- 
inerous as we approach the fouth, and' the more Eerce and ravenous ; yet in Carolina it 
never devours the human fpecies, but on the contrary, fhuns mankind, yet will kill 
dogs as rhey fwim in the rivers, and hogs which feed in the fwamps. It is often feeir 
floating like a log of wood on the furface of the water, and is miftaken for fuch by dogs, 
swd other animals, which it feizes and draws under water to devour at its leifure. Like the 
wolf,, when prefTed by loilg hunger, it will fwallow mud, and even ftones, and pieces of 
wood. They often get rnto the wears in purfuk of hjh, and do much mifchief by break- 
ing them- to pieces. 

They are torpid during the winter in Carolina, and retire into their dens, which they 
form by burrowing far u.K-ier ground ; it rtiakes the entrance under water, and works 
upwards. In fpring it quits its retreat, and reforts to the rivers, which it fwims up- 
and down, and chiefly fceks its. prey near the mouth, where the water is brackilh. 

It roars and makes a dreadful noife at its firft leaving its den, and againft bad wea- 
ther. It lays a vafl number of eggs in the fand, near the banks of lakes and rivers, and 
leaves them to be hatched by the fim : multitudes are deftroycd as foon as hatched, 
(ither by their own fpecies, or by hlh of prey. In South-America the carrion 
vulture is the inftrument of Piovidersce to deftroy multitudes, by that means preventing 
the country fiom being rendered uninhabitable. Bartram, in his account of his travels,, 
has given a very particular account of thefc creatures. 

-f This little crea:-uie is tot.-^.Uy green; very (lender ; tail near double the length of 
the body, and irs whole length about five inches. 

It inhabits Carolina, is domcftii.-, familiar, and harmlcfs; fports on tables and win- 
<iows, and amufes by its agility in catching flies ; gazes at mankind without concern ; 



Five-lined do. . . Lacerta, 

Guada do. . , — iguana, 

Blue tail do. . , • faciata, 

Spotted do. . . ■ pundata, 

Annulated do. . ■ ■ - 

Slender do. , . • 

Scorpion do. . . - 

Lion do. 4 . . fex lineata. 


Mud Iguana, or Siren, 



Great Rattle-fnake,* . Crotalus, horridus, 

Small do. . . duriflus. 

Miliary do. . ^ miliarus. 


fwells its throat inlo a protubtrance, which it difchargcs at will. Cold afFe£ts the co^ 
lours ; in that uncertain climate, when there is a quick tranfition, in the fame day, 
from hot to cold, it changes inftantiy from the molt brilliant green to a dull brown. It 
is fometinies tempted by a gleam of fun to quit its retreat, but by the fuddcn change of 
weather, is fo enfeebled, as not to be able to return to its hole, and will die with 

* This reptile has a brown broad head ; yellowifh brown back, marked with broad 
iranfverfe dentated bars of black ; fcales rough ; belly cinereous ; the jaws furnKhed 
with fmall fharp teeth ; four fangs in the upper jaw, incurvated, large, and pointed,' 
the inftruments of death ; at the bafe of each a round orifice, opening into a hollow, 
that near the end of the tooth appears again in form of a fmall channel ; thcfe teeth 
may be erefted or compreffed ; when in the aAion of biting, they force out of a gland 
near their roots the fatal juice ; this is received into the round orifice of the teeth, 
conveyed through the tube into the channel, and thence with unerring direction into 
the wound.. 

Thetailisfurnifhed with a rattle, confifting of joints loofely conneftcd ; the number 
uncertain, depending, as is pretended, on the age of the animal, it receiving with every 
year a new joint. Authors mention forty and fcventy. 

Rattlefnakesgiow to the length of eight feet, and, according to a newfpapcr ac- 
count, to fourteen. 

They fwarm in the lefs inhabited parts of North-America ; now almoft extirpated in 
the populous; none found faither north than the mountains near lake Champlain ; bur 
in the fouth inftft, South- America, even as far as Brafd. Love woods and lofty hills, 
efpevjally wiiere the ftrata arc rocky or chalky : tlie pafs near Niagara abounds with 





Familiar- fnakcj . Coluber, aeftivus," 

Porracious do. ; « — — — mifterizans, 

Crofled do. . * — iimus, 

Water- viperj* . • * — >^ — punftatus, 


ihemj Being {low of moticm, ttiey frequent the Mes of rills, to make prey of frogs, or 
of fuch animals t'.iat refort there to quench their thiift ; are generally found during fum- 
mer in pairs ; iu winter, collcft in multitude^, and retire beneath the ground, beyoni 
the reach of froft : tempted by the warmth of a fpring day, they are often obfsrved 
to creep out wfeak and languid : a perfon has fccn a piece of ground covered with them, 
ind killed with a rod between fixty and feverttyy till overpowered with the ftcnch, he 
was obliged to retire. 

They couple in Auguft, and then arC Hioft <iartgerous ; are viviparous, and bring 
forth iri Juncj about twelve young ones : between that and September they acquire the 
length of a foot. 

Providence has given mankind a fecurity againft the bite of thefe dreadful reptiles, 
for it does not often fail warning the pafTcnger of its vicinrty, by the rattle of its tail. 
Ifi fine weather that monition is always given, in wet weather feldom, which gives the 
Indians a dread of travelling amidft the woods in rainy fcafons. 

It moves along vi'ith the head on the groutnd ; but if alarmed, it flings its body into a 
circle, coiling itfelf with the hedd iri the^ Centre cieft, aiid \vith the eyes flaming 
in a moft terrific manner. Happily it may be eafily avoided J it is flow in pur- 
fuit, and has not the pciwer of fpringing at its affailant, like many of the innocent 

It is difficult to fpeak of its fafcinating powers : authors of credit dcfcribe the effe<f>s. 
Birds have been feen to drop into its mouth, fquirrels defcend from their trees, and le- 
verets run into its jaws. Terror and amazement fcem to lay hold on thefe little animals ; 
they make violent efforts to got away, ftill keeping their eyes fixed on thofe of the 
fnake ; at length, wearied with their movements, and frightened out of all capacity of 
knowing the courfe they ought to take, become at length the piey of the cxpefting dc- 
vourcry probably in their l.irt convuUive motion. 

Rattlefnakes are apt to frequent houfes : every doniieftJc animal on their approaeh,- as 
ifby inftindl, takes alarm ; dogs brilHe-y and the poultry crcft their feathers ; hogs only 
attack them, feeding on them wiih impunity. The Indians will alfo eat their fleih. 

The bite is of the moft venomous kind ; if the wound is on a vein or artery^ 
death enfues as rapid as thought ; if in a flelhy pa»t, there are hopes of rcnKdy ; 
tlie moft efficacious, if done in time, is cither the burning, or the cutting out the part 
afJcdtcd. The fymptoms are, naufea, eonvulfioni, fpitting of blood, and bloody ftool* ; 
lofsofthcufe of limbs; fwelliiigs, and difcoloured (kin ; fever, dclhia; and if the 
cure takes any length of time, dilhirbcd reft, and dreams of the moft horrible kinds. 

-^ This fnakc has a large l\cad, fm;vU neck ; fangs in the upper jaw ; colour of the 
head and back dufliy ; belly fafciatcd with black, and yellow. At the head of the 
WJl a fmall lv>rny fubflni*:ei 



Black-fnake, , 

Coach Whip do* , 

Corn-fnake, . , 

JBlack-viper, . . 

Brown do. . , 

Copper-bellied fnakc, 

Striated do. , 

Potted do. 

White bodied, brown-eyed do. 

Black-fnake, with linear rings, 

Hooped do. 

Dufky do. . 

Vitiated do. 

Penfacola do; , . 

Minute do. , 

Golden-eyed do. . 

Moccafin do. 

Grey fpotted do. of Carolina, 

Little brown bead do. 

Joint do. . , 

Garter do. . , 


Coluber, con(tri£lor 


r fulvius 


■' ■ luridus 

- ■ ftriatulus 
" ■ ■■- punftatis 
• atropos 

■ l&beris 

- dolintus 
• fipedon 





GlaiTy fnake, , « Anguis ventralis 

Chicken do. . , — — maculata 

Striped do. . , eryx 

Blind do. . . fragilis 

Brownifli fpotted do. . reticulata 

Yellowifh white do. . ■ lumbrjcalis 

Hiffing do. , ' , ■ 

Ring do. . . —— , 

Pale-coloured do. with brown belts, laticauda. 

Inhabits Carolina: fwims well, and is very dexterous in catching fifti. During 
fummcr, numbers of them arc fcen hanging on the boughs of trees over the rivers, watch, 
jng the approach of fifh or fowl, and frequently drop into the boats paffing beneath. They 
plunge on their prey, and purfue it with great fwiftnefs ; and :is foon as they catch it, 
iwim alhore to devour it : arc called the Water Rattlcfnakc, and arc fuppofed to be as 
fatal in their bite. The little horn at the tail gives it a dreadful name, as if armed with 
death at both extremities. The fupetftitious believe, that by a jerk of that part it can 
mortally wound any animal, and even caufe a tree to wither by tranj^xing the bark. 





Hog-nofe fnake, . Boa conftortrix, 

Greenifli variegated do. . " — canina, 

' Large fpotted do. . — conftridlor,* 

Murine do. , . — murina, 

Afh-co!oured do. . — fcytale, 

Yellovv fpotted do. . — cenchria, 

Dufky white do. . — enydris, 

Pale-coloured do. . — hortulana. 

* This is an irrtmenfe animal ; it often exceeds thirty-fix feet in length ; the body 
is very thick, of a dufky white colour, and its back is interfperfed with twenty-fotir 
large pale irregular fpots ; the tail is of a darker colour, and the fides are beautifully 
variegated with pale fpots : befides, the whole body is interlperfed with fmall brown 
fpots. The head is covered with frpall fcales, and has no broad laminae betwixt the 
eyes, but has a black, belt behind the eyes. It wants the large dog-fangs, and of 
courfe its bite is not poifonous. The tongye is flefhy and forked. Above the eyes, 
on each fide, the head rifes high. The fcales of this ferpent arc all very fmall, roundifh 
and fmooth. The tail does not exceed one-eighth of the whole length of the animal. 
The Indians, who adore this monftrous ariimal, ufe the fein for clothes, on account of 
its fmoothnefs and beauty. There are feveral of thefe fkins of the above dimenfions 
preferved, and to be feen in the different mufeums of Europe, particularly in the li- 
brary and botanic garden of Upfal in Sweden, which has of late been greatly enriched 
by Count Grillinborg. The fleih of this ferpent is eat by the Indians and the 
negroes. Pifo, Margraave aqd Kempfer, give the following account of its method 
of living and catching its prey. It frequents caves and thick forerts, where it conceals, 
itfelf, and fuddenly darts out upon ftrangers, wild beafls, &c. VVhen it choofes a tree, 
for its watching-place, it fupports itfelf by twifting its tuil round the trunk or a branch, 
and dart» down upon fheep, goats, tigers, or any animal that comes within its reach. 
When it lays hold of animals, efpecially any of the larger kinds, it twifts itfelf feve- 
ral times round their body, and by the vaft force of its circular mufcles bruifes and 
breaks all their bones: after the bones are broke, it licks the fltin of the animal all 
over, befnjearing it with a glutinous kind of faliva. This operntion is intended to, 
facilitate deglutition, and is a preparation for fwallowing the whole animal. If it 
be a (lag, or any horned animal, it begins to fwallow the feet firft, and gradually 
fucks in the body, and laft of .ill the head ; when the horns happen to be large, this 
ferpent has been obferved to go about for a long time with the horns of a flag flicking 
out from its mouth : as the animnl digcfts, the horns putrefy and fall off. After this 
ferpent has fwallowed a flag or a tiger, it is unable for fome days to move ; the hunters,^ 
who are well acquainted with this circumflance, always take this opportunity of de- 
ftroying it. When irritated it makes a loud hifTmg noife. It is faid to cover itfelf 
over with leaves in fuch places as flags or other animals frequent, in order to conceal 
Itfelf from their fight, and that it may the more eafily lay hold of them. 

jV. B. The figure giifn in the annexed f late, by iiiijlakt of tbs engraver, is impioftrly 
called The Black Snake. 

a • TWO- 



This has in general been confidcrcd as a mondrous prodiK^ion ; 
b\U j\ii". Morfe lays, he is difpofed to believe that it is a diftint^ 
fpecies ; he obfen'es that he has feen one, and received accounts of 
three others, found in different parts of the United States : one of 
thefe was about eight inches long, and both heads, as to every out- 
ward appearance, were equally perfetft, and branching out from ihe 
p»eck at fin acute apgje. 

Vol. IV* %G FISH 

( 4IO ) 







Whale. Whale, etgh 







Sea lamprey. 

An'gler. C. Angler, 



Balistes. Unicorn fifh, 


Old wife. 




OsTRACioN.5. Oftracion, 

'fgk Jp}- 

Shark. Arrow-headed fljark> Tetrodon. Prickly tetrodon. 

Saw Ihark, Short do. 

White fhark, Globe do. 

Sturgeon. Sturgeon, Lumpus. Lump, 

Hiifo, Pipe. Short pipe. 



Eel. Common eel, £el. . Black eel, 

Conger eel, Lance,- Lance. 

Mwray eel, 


SECT. a. 


Comttion Cod 



Froft do. 


Haddock, ' 


Coal fifii. 


P. Btenny, 




m* 41- 

SECT. 3. 



Sucking fifli. 

CHitTODON. Scalelefs chaetcdon. 

CoRVPH^NE. Blue corypha;Q,e, 


Parrot do. 


Lineated do. 



. Father lafher, 


Yellow perch, 

Acadian bull -head, 

Rudder do. 



Dotted do. 


C, Flounder, 



Eyed perch. 


Philadelphian do. 


Black do. 

Lineated flounder, 


Lupated do. 

Negro perch. 

Dentated do. 

Black tail do. 


. Snapper, 


Pqrk fidi. 



Striated perch. 

Silver fiftr, 


Radiated gilt-head, 

Trifurcated perch, 

Virginian do. 

Striped bafs, 


Mutton fifh. 


Mangrove do. 


Hog do. 

River perch. 

Great hog do. 

Stickleback. Stickleback, fmr 

Cinereous wrafle. 




Drum fifh, four/pe- 


Mackrel, three fpf ties. 


Tunny fifh. 

Yellow wrafle, 


Bone fifti.